On one of my travels, I stayed in a lovely home with a beautiful stacked-stone fireplace in the living room. The craftsmanship was wonderful, and the stones themselves were exquisite, with veins of black running through each stone, adding to the beauty of the design.
A year or so later, I was back in the same town, and we passed by the home, only to find that it had burned to the ground. It was explained to me that the beautiful stones that comprised the fireplace were actually the cause. The black veins that ran through each stone were actually veins of petroleum that would ignite when the temperature of the stone reached a certain temperature. On one cold winter’s day, the fire reached the ignition temperature, and BOOM… the fireplace exploded into flame, burning the house to the ground.
Christian, what does the house of your life look like?
Are you so intent on doing good things, you may not be doing the right things?
Are the things you are doing driven out of selfish motivation, or the motivation of the love of Christ?
Are you building a seemingly beautiful house of good works out of incendiary materials?
How has what you have done with your life impacted the world for Jesus?
In 1 Corinthians 3:13-15, Paul tells us…
… Each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.
When we enter eternity, we will ALL be judged. For the believer, when our works are put through the purifying fire of His holy judgement, only what was done for Christ will last.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. ~ 2 Corinthians 5:10
We will all have to give an answer for what we as individuals have done. We will all have to take responsibility for our own attitudes and actions. In light of that, we should all examine ourselves, and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to us those areas that we need to surrender to Him, and pray as David did when he said…
Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:
And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. ~ Psalm 139:23-24
I close with a thought from British missionary C. T. Studd…
Only one life, yes only one,
Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;
And when at last I’ll hear the call,
I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.
— from the poem Only One Life, ‘Twill Soon Be Past
written by C. T. Studd