“Life, for most of us, feels like a movie we’ve arrived to forty minutes late.
Sure, good things happen, sometimes beautiful things.
But tragic things happen too.
What does it mean? We find ourselves in the middle of a story that is sometimes wonderful, sometimes awful, usually a confusing mixture of both, and we haven’t a clue how wo make sense of it all.
No wonder we keep losing heart.
We need to know the rest of the story.” (John Eldredge, “Epic”)
Do you know the rest of the story?
Do you know the larger story of our lives?
John Eldredge does a great job telling the epic story of our lives, as found in the Bible, in a thin, 104-page paperback, called “Epic”, that I highly recommend you read. You can get it on Amazon here: https://smile.amazon.com/Epic-John-Eldredge/dp/0785288791/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1590255818&sr=1-1
Here’s a three or four minute version I wrote to help you take heart and be inspired today…
Once upon a time, there were three glorious beings, whose individual brilliance was only surpassed by their deep and passionate love for each other, making them like three separate flames that burned as one brilliant fire - one magnificent Being!
Out of his overflowing love, wisdom, and might, the Magnificent One formed powerful and beautiful creatures to sing songs that would fill eternity and magnify his praiseworthy name.
Heaven was filled for a long time with these angelic voices, and they lived happily together with their wise and loving Creator.
But for one of these angelic beings, heaven was not enough… he wanted more than to be loved - he wanted to be worshipped. So, evil was born, and in the dragon’s deceit and treachery, he seduced one third of the heavenly host to betray their loving King.
And there was war in heaven. The mighty Archangel, Michael, rallied the faithful to his side and fought against the Dragon and his deviants and drove them out of heaven, where they writhed in the pain of their defeat and sought desperately for revenge.
The scene was now set for the arrival of the Magnificent One’s most exalted creation – man. As a home for man, he spoke an astonishing world into existence – filled with beautiful skies, breathtaking landscapes, and extraordinary creatures of all kinds. He then lovingly formed man out of the dust of the earth and breathed the breath of life into him. Taking the man’s rib, he formed a perfect partner for him and called her woman. Man and woman were very happy together, and the angels burst forth in songs of praise, wonder and amazement!
But the Dragon called the Creator’s heart into question and accused him of holding out on them and not having his beloved’s best interests at heart. “Why not be the god of your own lives?” he whispered.
So, they ate the fruit of independence from their Creator and immediately fell from their garden paradise to wander in a cursed world that was a mere shadow of its former splendor.
Forever aware of the cost of free will, the Lover still loved his beloved, and launched into the next phase of his brilliant and mysterious plan to rescue them from their lost and broken state and win back their hearts. The Magnificent One would pour himself into the body of a human and send that human into the world as the Savior of mankind
It was a bold and audacious plan – one that sprung from a passionate heart who would rather die a temporary death on earth, than live an eternity in heaven without his beloved.
Surely this would prove the goodness of his heart and the depth of his sincere love for them.
Time does not permit us to delve into all the fascinating stories that the book goes on to tell about our spiritual ancestors, but suffice to say that the plan involved a man named Abraham, who would become a nation named Israel, which would give birth to a child named Jesus, who would grow up to show his people the heart of the Magnificent One, and provide a way for them to come home.
Some of the people accepted his invitation and followed him. But most of them despised and rejected him – deceived by the same lie the Enemy had been spreading from the beginning. They crucified him – not understanding that he was the author of their stories and ours – the author of life itself.
He willingly sacrificed his body on the cross to save mankind and lay down a bridge across the abyss of hell, that we might walk across it and find our way home. But he who is life itself could not be destroyed – and three days later he rose from the dead!
His miraculous resurrection from the dead was emblazoned on the hearts of those to whom he appeared as both a powerful testimony that he truly was a flame of the Magnificent One, and dramatic proof of his unconditional love for man. One day the flame will return to judge and make right, to rescue and make new – and they will live happily ever after in heaven…
Like wildfire, this message spread: first in Jerusalem where the life-force lived, died and rose again; then in all Judea and Samaria; and finally, to the ends of the earth. One by one, the story was told. And one by one, the beloved either accepted or rejected the invitation to follow their Lover home.
The story continues today because it is our story – the story of our lives.
But many have never heard it because of the deafening roar of the Dragon who gets his revenge every time a lost soul takes his last breath and passes into eternal horrors.
Have you heard this story?
It involves angels and demons, heroes and villains, truth and deceit, fellowship and treachery, passion and adventure, hope and despair – all of the things that make a really good story… only this one’s real.
And the fate of the world really does hang in the balance.
What will you do?
And the angels are silent as the Lord awaits your reply.