This morning I typed the name of a local newspaper into my web browser, hoping to read something–anything–of interest. It is not unusual for me to be bored or disinterested in the headlines; very few capture my attention and draw me to their article. This morning was no different.
I switched over to a global news site. Nah. Just more celebrity buzz, I didn’t need that.
Right then, an intriguing thought leapt into the sleepy embers of my mind: “If Heaven wrote a newspaper, how would their headlines appear?” A smile toyed at my mind, ideas swinging back and forth like a yoyo in the hand of a small child.
“Local church trust funds declining: Low trust, low tithes”
“Lack of prayers offered resulting in lack of prayers answered”
“Worship band dazzles crowd with spectacular lighting effects”
“Teenage boy reaches height of popularity”
“Saving energy? Electric guitar volt eliminating need for Holy Spirit jolt”
“Washington girl loses faith”
“True commitment: College student goes into debt but remains loyal to latest technology”
“Thursday prayer meetings plummet, Friday parties skyrocket”
“Christ-claiming man becomes next American Idol”
“Earthlings attempt to become more earth-friendly, less user-friendly”
Oh, I’m amusing. But maybe there’s a few good ones buried a few pages deeper…
“Woman surrenders to Jesus: Says she lost the battle but gained the victory”
“Male college student defends girl’s honor, risks becoming social reject”
“Shuffling it up: Athlete replaces secular workout tunes with God-honoring playlist”
“Young dating couple say NO to sex before marriage”
“BREAKING NEWS: CHARLIE IS HOME AT LAST”
“Under new management: Award-winning vocalist leads fans to Christ”
“Extreme Makeover: Teenage girl revamps wardrobe to model modesty”
“Retiring from service? Senior citizen depletes retirement fund to begin street ministry outreach”
“Ordinary young man takes up his cross to follow Jesus”
“No Surprise: Heavenly Hosts defeat Malicious Minions 777-0”
Okay, so maybe there’s not really a newspaper in Heaven. Maybe the angels don’t sit around with their cup of hot chocolate or Earl Grey, chatting about the latest report on the Earthlings. It does make me contemplate, however, the real value of the decisions we make in our lifetime.
Contrary to my cynicism, I honestly do not believe it is a sin to enjoy what we have in life. I don’t want anyone to think that if they have an iPhone or the latest gaming system, that they are subsequently bound for Hell. No, no, no…God does give us resources and things to enjoy on this earth. But it is crucial that we not place higher value on the toys of life and neglect the joys of the Lord. Or neglect accomplishing that which brings joy to the Lord.
Life is too short to be lived for ourselves. And as believers of a saving God, it is imperative we realize that our lives are not our own. (Actually, side note: our lives have never been our own. But it is only now that we can appreciate the authority to which we submit.) As loved ones who have been ransomed by a merciful King, our only goal–and subsequently, our only joy–is to strive to live worthy of the life we have been given. We have been given life, we have been given hope and a future. We are deserving of no good thing.
So my challenge to you is this: Live a life worthy of heaven’s headlines. You might not be offered a spot by the local news, but don’t worry. Jesus paid to reserve a place for you in the heavenly realms…and He never misses a thing.
“You are not your own; you were bought at a price.
Therefore honor God with your body…” – 1 Corinthians 6:19b-20
“Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner
worthy of the gospel of Christ.” – Philippians 1:27a