Do you ever have those moments during the day when you're working and you just kind of stop and realize that everything you're working on, everything you're investing time and energy into is one day going to be burnt up? I had one of those moments today. I was responding to e-mail, and my mind just ran with the fact that there's all this infrastructure, all this organization, all these wheels that spin on many different levels, and every level has its own stressors, joys, and harships, and yet one day, when Christ returns, it's just going to all fall apart and be consumed.
Here's the thing: it's healthy for me to think like this every once in a while, and probably more often than I even think. Not because work here on earth is unimportant. (I'm supposed to be doing everything to the glory of God.) Not because I need to become a monk and isolate myself from everything in the world except the study of Scripture and prayer. (Although there are some days when that life seems very appealing.) No, instead, having those thoughts reminds me not to take it all so seriously. All the hype, all the "urgent" things that my life seems to be built around so often, I need to put in perspective. They may last another 45-50 years or so for me, and they could go on another 1000 or 2000 years after I'm gone, but at some point, in the future, at a very real and historical time and place, they will all stop, and a new heaven and new earth will begin. Hopefully that perspective doesn't make me lazy or suicidal. Hopefully, it makes me more of a realist and maintain better balance.