Life on planet earth is transient. We measure it in time, not knowing how long we have. Perhaps for this reason we often measure our lives in terms of meaning. Some seek meaning in their appearance, others in achievement, and yet others in their religious beliefs. But what life and the scriptures teach is our bodies, like the flowers of the field will come and go; it is possible to become highly successful at things that do not matter; and we could spend our lives defending religious beliefs that turn out to be inadequate and inaccurate.
“For all flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of grass” the apostle writes, reminding us that in Christ, we have been born again, not from mortal origin but from the immortal, incorruptible seed (1 Peter 1:24). Regarding our obsession with earthly security and success Jesus asks: “What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life?”, reminding us that he who seeks the eternal Kingdom first will have all these things added to him (Matt. 16:26; 6:33). On our deeply ingrained doctrines and beliefs Jesus challenges our fallen mindset unapologetically, “You search and investigate and pore over the Scriptures diligently because you suppose that you have eternal life through them. These very Scriptures testify about Me! And still you refuse to come to Me, so that you might have life” (John 5:39).
At the start of a new year, our earnest desire for you is to live a life, not ruled by time and what is temporary but in cultivating this simple confession: “I have completed my journey, I did not run my race in vain or spend my labor to no purpose” (Philippians 2:16). Whether you are 19 or 90 years old and regardless of your life circumstances or your past, we know and remain fully persuaded that God will meet you right where you are. God’s purpose is for you to be conformed to the image of His Son, to be “Human as God intended.” As God’s very own handiwork, Christ’s goal was not simply to forgive your sins but to establish you in Kingdom purpose to do those works for which you were uniquely designed (Ephesians 2:10).
Please know, our dearest friends, that it is our honor to walk alongside you on this journey. Like you, we are in it for the long-haul. We do not imagine, not even for a moment, that “we have arrived,” but we are determined and energized by the Holy Spirit to leave the past behind us and to press on into God’s purpose for our lives. If anything, we remain as Kingdom ambassadors, not having an agenda or anything to “put on you.” Instead we are groaning inwardly, as if in pains of labor, to see the full and mature manifestation of the sons and daughters of Him who called us to Glory.
All our love and affections,
Pieter Van Niekerk
Lifechangers Board Chair