Life is all about endings. We look forward to them. With our children, it’s changing that last diaper, finishing a rough school year, or celebrating the final day of the Little League season. Even in our marriages, we throw a party at the end of each successful year we remain together. We call it our anniversary. We burn the note when we pay off the mortgage. We work diligently to ensure our burial plans and final wills are in place. It’s all about the endings.
God sees things differently, though. He is all about beginnings. His hand reaches out, and things change, events happen, and the world becomes different.
Our God is an After God.
Look to Genesis 2:7 to find God’s vision of the future. All of creation existed around him, and all of it was formed by his hand. The Word tells us, “Then the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.”
Beginnings. It was the start of mankind; the start of history; the start of all that would ever be. God stretched forth his hand, and he opened up the possibilities for all that we would ever become.
God even has a plan for us after the dust of our bodies begins to fail us. Ecclesiastes 12:7 tells us, “And the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.” To die is not an ending. It is the beginning of God’s new vision for us. It is a celebration of life.
At times we become so enamored of what we have around us that we forget to look at our lives with God’s eyes. There are no endings, simply transitions. What is a transition if not a new beginning telling us that God is doing a new thing for us? That is exciting!
Jesus saw this truth. As he hung on the cross, he looked forward rather than backwards. We read in Luke 23:46, “Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!’ And having said this he breathed his last.”
The Son was already with the Father. He had already moved from this life into the next. This was not the end of his existence, but rather the beginning of a whole new chapter for mankind.
We can all look forward to God’s After story, for Revelation 19:9 reveals what our existence is all about. “And the angel said to me, ‘Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ And he said to me, ‘These are the true words of God.’ ”
The true words of God! In the beginning, God stretched forth his hand, and all creation began to exist in the heavens. In the end of time, we will dine with the Creator at the marriage supper of the Lamb. How is that for a grand leap into a new beginning?
God does not know endings. When things begin to change for us here on earth, let’s be excited, for our transition is simply the start of a new phase, and we will find the next step to be as exciting as anything that has gone on before, if we let God guide our footsteps toward him.
God always moves forward, and he wants us to move along with him.
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