"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." II Corinthians 4:16-18
Have you ever seen God?
Have you ever seen a soul?
Neither have I, although I feel like I have been close as I have sat at the bedside of saints who slipped away into eternity.
Pause for a moment and think about the important truth communicated in these verses. As Christ-followers we fix our focus on developing something that we cannot see (our soul) in order to please and prepare for Someone we have never seen (our God).
No wonder faith is so important!
How timely is this study we are embarking upon over the next 40+ days because we will be focusing like a laser on the significance of the soul.
The challenge of living for the invisible is dealing with distractions of the visible. The truths of the eternal are obscured by the temporary troubles of life. Life is the clash of two realities - the physical and the spiritual or, the momentary and the eternal. We live in both realities but must decide which one we will live for. Faith is focusing on spiritual realities in the world of the physical.
Our physical existence is fraught with pain and suffering. All pain and suffering is allowed by God to develop our faith since it forces you to choose which reality you will permit to define your circumstance. Will you let the pain define your faith or will you, by faith, focus through your pain and see the real and eternal world? The purpose of our temporary suffering is to strengthen our faith by choosing to rest our invisible soul in the presence of an invisible God.
This truth is expressed well by the writer of Herbrews in describing the faith of Jesus during His earthly trials, "Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:2
Our soul is our escape hatch from the painful realities of the physical to the powerful realities of faith! Without our soul our pain WOULD be our reality with no hope of anything better. The invisible soul God gave us lifts us above the temporary until we arrive in the eternal.
How is your soul! Will you allow that which you have never seen to help you focus on the invisible?