Gains And Losses

Throughout life we lose. Be it relationships or loved ones, jobs or health, possessions or innocence, dreams or security, we often feel what is precious to us being wrenched away forever.

By our losses, God seeks to strengthen our tie to him. In losing things and people in this life, we can make gains in the spiritual realm. Such gains do not come automatically. Our hearts must move from love of this world to desire and appreciation for the next. Loss can also make us bitter or resentful, if we choose that path.

As we move through life (that's a euphemism for growing older), a Christian gains much: wisdom, a greater desire for heaven, a stronger faith, holiness, a deeper love for others, a wider circle of spiritual family, a closer walk with God, to name a few. Please read the Bible text at this link and note the apostle Paul's language of loss and gain: Philippians 3:7-14 NASB.

With such a perspective, truly one can say that, for the Christian, "Christ is all" (Colossians 3:11). Or as David expressed it in his loss of security, "I have no good besides You" (Psalm 16.2 NASB).

The questions I need to ask, then, are ones like these: (1) What is God teaching me in this loss?; (2) How can I be a better disciple because of this loss?; (3) How can I find a spiritual gain in this loss?; (4) Where can I identify selfishness in my feelings about this loss?; (5) Where is the Lord in this loss?

Judith Voirst called life a process of "necessary losses." The Bible shows us how those can become eternal gains. Then, what Eliphaz spoke will be true of us, who will "fear no loss" (Job 5.24 NASB). J. Randal Matheny (see bio and blog), preacher/missionary to Brazil.

Mike Riley, Gospel Snippets

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