Friday, March 8, 2013

Daylight Lost and Found

“For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” (Matthew 16:25, NASB95)

While I understand the purpose for Daylight Saving Time, I have never quite agreed with the axiom of “spring forward.” That phrase is rather oxymoronic don’t you think. Oh sure. I get it. In the springtime we move the clock forward by one hour. Those are the mechanics of it and they are easily accomplished. Just reach over to the night stand, adjust the hour on your alarm clock and voila. You’re now living in Daylight Saving Time. But changing your internal clocks isn’t so easy, is it? That’s because last fall you took advantage of an extra hour of sleep when you were instructed to “fall back” and set your clock earlier for a net one hour gain of sleep. That means “springing forward” this Sunday will be difficult for most of us. I don’t know about you, but I for one will find it difficult to “spring” into any kind of action when the alarm clock goes off this coming Sunday. In fact, if I would let myself, I could easily “fall back” into bed even though I anxiously await the wonder of spring. And that’s precisely why I won’t let myself fall back into bed – the wonder of spring. You see, I love spring. I love the smell of freshly mowed grass. I love the cleansing beauty of spring rains and the flowers that follow. And more than anything I look forward to longer days with more to do outside. In short, Daylight Saving Time is the collective sacrifice our culture makes in order to afford ourselves and our neighbors more time with our families and more time enjoying God’s creation in its most colorful season. The investment is minimal. The payoff is tremendous. Isn’t that just like walking with the Lord? After all, Jesus tells us in Matthew 16:25 that losing life for His sake is in reality finding true life. You see, Jesus has called us to a life of sacrifice – one in which we pick up a cross every day and lug it around with us. In return He promises true life, full of beauty and color that can only be had in relationship with Him. Many of you here at North Side are used to the sacrifice of carrying your crosses. Many of you are not. Many of you here understand the gain God provides as you sacrifice your resources, your labor and your time for the kingdom. Still others are chasing the next promotion at work, the next greatest investment or the next romance and in the big picture these things amount to nothing more than an extra hour of sleep on a dark winter’s day. The take away here is that just as the logic of the axiom “spring forward” escapes me, so does the logic of sacrificing for the Kingdom for anyone who is living in the flesh. So here’s the deal. Daylight Saving Time presents us with a perfect opportunity to reflect on the sacrifice God has called us to make and the gain He promises to give. As spring begins to break and the newness of life begins to appear God can show us the Kingdom opportunities we have missed for want of an extra hour of sleep. Better yet, he can show us the opportunities that lie ahead. My prayer this week is that we would all move beyond our flesh and begin living with the recognition that we are called to lose this life for His sake. I pray that you would lay hold of God’s promise for spiritual gain as you “spring forward” into true life that can only be had when you lose your life for Christ’s sake.

Scripture to Claim
“But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,” (Philippians 3:7–8, NASB95) 

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