The former tend to be peaceful and content, no matter how physically handicapped they may be, or how sick, or how alone. They are an inspiration to us young ‘uns, and a joy to visit. And when they’ve gone on ahead, they are remembered often and missed greatly.
The latter, on the other hand—those who have no use for the spiritual—tend to be chronically sad, lonely, crabby, complaining, bored, and often clinging tearfully to their once-active pasts. It’s a recipe for despair. And I see a lot of it—more and more as the years go by, which is no doubt a reflection of our culture’s increasing embrace of the material world and growing neglect of the spiritual.
The ancient Greek philosophers posed three very important questions whose answers may predict which category you’re likely to fall into should you live to a ripe old age:
- Where did you come from?
- What are you doing here?
- Where are you going?
If you’re Christian, you’ll be able to answer all three quickly, and with great certainty. And whether you’ve been a member of that blessed group for 50 hours or 50 years, your assurance should land you solidly in the first group of people on the cusp of eternity—those who’ve tended their spiritual needs, and are therefore peaceful and content.
If you are not Christian, you may be able to answer these questions with a little guesswork and a lot of wishful thinking. Or perhaps you’ll be stumped. Either way, you may be headed for the second group of old folk—those who are sad, lonely, crabby, complaining, bored, and clinging to the past.
That’s my prediction, at any rate, based on many years of observation.
But there’s good news even for the despairing, because it’s never too late to change your tune. If you’d like to know for sure where you came from, what you’re doing here, and where you’re going, simply ask the Lord to save you. There are no magic words; just pray a prayer something like this one:
I know that I am a sinner and that I cannot save myself. Instead, I repent of all my sin, trust in You as my Lord and Savior, and gratefully receive Your free gift of eternal life. Thank You, Lord Jesus, for dying on the cross in payment for my sin and for rising from the dead to defeat death once and for all. Please cleanse me of my iniquity and make me Yours forevermore. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
When you pray something like this from your heart, the Lord will instantly forgive you and grant you everlasting life. Congratulations—you are irrevocably heaven-bound!
Then, set your heart on growing in your new faith. Begin studying the Bible, turning first to the New Testament gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. And if possible, find a mature Christian to disciple you. Not that these things are necessary for salvation; they are not. But they’ll go a long way towards assuring you of peace and contentment in this life, and transforming you into the sort of old person who’ll be greatly missed when you go on ahead.