Friday, April 10, 2020

Nothing is meant to last forever, except...

[Originally published in the Monroe News on April 9, 2020]

Nothing is meant to last forever.  I know we’d like to think otherwise.  We definitely attempt to make things last forever.  I’m the first to admit I have delusions of grandeur when it comes to making things last.  I have this silly mindset that sets in when I purchase something new that I fall in love with.  This happens a lot when I purchase new gear for backpacking or camping with the family. I look at how fun or useful this new item of gear is and my thought immediately becomes: “Oh, I hope this lasts forever.”  I’ve seen how things wear out over time, and I don’t like it.

Over Black Friday 2019 I was able to purchase a large new family tent to meet the needs of our growing family.  With aspirations of using it a lot this coming summer my boys and I have tried it out in our backyard during this time of social quarantine.  Its great. We love it. The tent has room for everybody, has places to put your gear, it even allows the rainfly to peel back letting the campers sleep under the stars.  I truly would like for this tent to last forever. Will it? Well I think you know.

But isn’t this true in every aspect of our lives?  We want our new cars to last forever. We want our business, our schools, even our churches to last forever.  We gasp in horror at the thoughts of places closing and in the moment it really can be a tragedy. But nothing is meant to last forever.  

We even fight this fight with our own bodies.  Time and aging remain undefeated in the scope of history and that does not appear to be changing anytime soon.  We can fight and fight against the effects of time on our bodies but even this flesh we’ve been blessed with isn’t going to last.  I’m just going to say it, death confronts us all.

Now before you think this is all just doom and gloom let me continue.  I need to amend my initial statement ever so slightly. To say *nothing* is meant to last forever isn’t entirely true. Though our bodies face the reality of death, that doesn’t mean our lives or our existence are finished.  *We* are meant to last forever. Yes, you and me. We are meant to live eternally. We have been created with an eternal soul that endures. And not just that, the Bible teaches of a beautiful event to come which we call the resurrection of the dead in which we are taught that even our bodies will be raised to last forever.  

Our hope in all of this rests upon the event Christians celebrate on Sunday:  Easter. The Resurrection of Jesus. I am perfectly fine with calling it the single greatest, most joyous, most significant event in all history.  Jesus who was crucified on the cross on Good Friday was raised from the dead, victorious, on the third day. He was raised into a glorified body. He was raised in a flesh meant to last forever.  Free of aging, free of illness and viruses. Free of sin, free of hate, full of love, and eternal.

When we’re in the midst of a worldwide pandemic and the flesh seems as frail as ever this might be something hard for us to envision.  A permanent cure against all illness? Could it be? That is part of the promise given in Jesus Christ to all who believe. On the day of resurrection, which is indeed the day Jesus Christ returns to this earth, all will be raised. 

That will be the day we can all shake our firsts at cancer and say “you’ve lost!”.  That will be the day we can stand over all the viruses of this world and pound them into the dust of oblivion.  Aging? Never again. Death? Defeated. I look forward to this day and I hope you can join me in the same. For this is the joy given us in the Easter resurrection of Jesus our Lord.  He is risen!

To God be the glory.
Mark Witte is the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church. Contact him at

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