Salvation is free. Crowns are earned.
Final installment of the open letter
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing.” II Timothy 4:7-8
“God has given me so very much, and He requires much from me. I want to run a good race so that when life is all said and done God can pull me into His lap and say, ‘Good job, My little sunshine.’
Early in our marriage I attended a Bible study entitled ‘Becoming a woman of Influence.’ At the end of the Bible study, we were asked the question: ‘If you could write your own obituary at the end of your life, what would you want others to say about you?’ This is my answer: ‘She was a woman of great faith, who spoke the truth even when it was not popular to do so. She never missed an opportunity to pray, and she was wise beyond her years. You knew more about Jesus simply by spending time with her. She was a woman of truth, prayer, wisdom, and faith. Her life was an open Bible: the only Bible many people got to read.’ Having said that. I hope I have been able to share my heart with you about this in such a way that you can see that I simply want to be the best me that I can be. I want this for myself, but also for you and our children. However, I want this mostly for our God.
I am praying that you take this in the spirit in which it is shared. I believe you love me very much and also want what’s best for us, so I am asking you for your support in keeping my vows to the Lord. Your ever-devoted wife.”
At the end of the day, it is not how much fun we had, or how much good we did, or how many people we helped in this life that means so much. It boils down to what we have done that will affect others a thousand years from now. In other words, how many people have we helped trust Christ to get them to heaven. What good would it be to spend quality time with our family, but because of our attitude toward God and His body, the church, our grandchildren grow up unimpressed with church and unconcerned about God, and, therefore, spend an eternity separated from us and God in the lake of fire.
What is it that we need to share with people during this lifetime? It is not that we should confess our sins, or be water baptized, or join the church, or give our tithes. While all of these are needed to help other people get to heaven, what we need to share is that they need to trust Jesus to get them to heaven. It is vital that we share with others what God has done for them before it is too late.
“From a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.” II Timothy 3:14-15