You don’t have to be Superman to move faster than a speeding bullet. Life’s pace will propel you forward with amazing speed and before you realize it, you’re in the future you thought was light-years away.
That’s an unimaginable concept to the young, a passing acknowledgement to the middle-aged and confirmed reality to those advanced in years. The speed of life is a given, but the power that motivates us is a choice. That choice won’t change the momentum, but it will change the outcome.
The world is an enticing place where the message is always the same: strive for worldly gain. Take care of number one. Power is the goal and prestige is the evidence of success. To put an exclamation point on it, images of beautiful people with impressive positions and lavish lifestyles are paraded in movies and media. In that mindset, faith is deemed a myth and the focus of man’s devotion is redirected to the altar of the elite. They become the defining voices of correct thought to accommodate worldly doctrine. It promises utopian happiness, but it can’t deliver. Even if every goal is accomplished and every desire gratified, there remains an emptiness; a longing for something more because worldly gain is merely temporal.
Scripture presents a question intended to help avoid setting our sights on temporal things alone. It’s repeated in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke: “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?” The question is not a condemnation of accomplishment or success. Within the pages of the Bible there are accounts of highly accomplished men and women, for God has gifted mankind with talents and abilities that we might prosper. But the blessing of true power and prosperity must always be founded in our relationship with the Giver. To achieve and pretend that we are the authors of our talents is to gain nothing but momentary glory.
The Lord likens our lifespan to a vapor (James 4:14). “Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit’, whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” In four sentences James sums up the futility of moving through life without God and the warning is wise because God sees what we do not.
We possess finite understanding, but God is infinite knowledge and power. The Creator could have designed us to function in complete obedience. But He didn’t. That would have negated a willing relationship, so He gave us freedom to choose; to decide which power will propel us forward: ours or His. We can trust in our limited abilities or lean on His limitless power.
When the speed of life has lost it’s trajectory and the casing lies motionless, that will be the moment of truth. What we revered on earth will confront us in eternity. For the souls that coveted worldly gain and rejected Divine grace, they will inherit neither. What was left behind ended and the offer of salvation was forfeited. All that remains is a godless eternity of one’s own choosing. The inheritance of believers will be far different. Worldly trials will have passed and the hope of faith will be reality. In the very presence of God, endless light and life stretches before them.
Yes, life is speeding by and the target we have set our sights on matters. If our goal is anything less than Jesus Christ and faithfulness to Him, we are way off the mark. The One to whom all authority has been given is able to redirect the course of willing hearts, making transformation possible in an instant. He alone is worthy of our trust because, unlike a fictional Superman, the power of Jesus is real.