In the afterwards….
We all live there, don’t we?
There is always an afterwards that arises from every life experience.
In the afterward moments are interwoven within every significant and every trivial life event, moment, season, and time.
For in them all, we encounter joy and sorrow, achievement and failure, loyalty and betrayal, restraint and release, blessing and criticism, birth and death, brokenness and rehabilitation, exuberance and exhaustion and more at various levels; all dependent upon what life event has come before. Life experiences come and life experiences go. Yet, how we choose to respond to these life events in the afterwards matters most.
During the past eight months, I have taken my time studying the word ‘saint.’ I chose this word because I was challenged in my High Trust Leadership Course to embrace my life as a saint and not as a sinner. As a result of accepting Jesus Christ as my Savior and Lord, I am a new creation in Christ. This means that I am living in the afterwards of what Christ has done for me! I am able to abide and abound in that victory!
In the Old Testament, the word most often used for saint is the Hebrew transliterated word ‘chaciyd.’ Chaciyd is defined as a faithful person dedicated to living a holy and godly life in honor of his God.
In the New Testament, the Greek transliterated word for saint is ‘hagios.’ Hagios is defined as a holy, sacred, and pure people devoted to their God. Hagios people are a generous, open-hearted, kind and courteous, hospitable people. They walk and talk in a way that they experience their Savior and Lord walking with them – here on earth – and so their life displays a reverent, holy, and heavenward perspective!
Saints are all about living life in the afterwards! Saints live life on earth as the redeemed and sanctified in Christ!
For the saints of God understand that victory in Christ has been realized. They choose to live that way!
In Revelation 15: 3-4, the saints declare this truth:
And (the saints) sang the song of God’s servant Moses and of the Lamb:
“Great and marvelous are your deeds,
Lord God Almighty.
Just and true are your ways,
King of the nations.
Who will not fear you, Lord,
and bring glory to your name?
For you alone are holy.
All nations will come
and worship before you,
for your righteous acts have been revealed.
Did you notice that as the saints sang, their songs of praise centered upon their Lord and King?
The self-centered, self-admiring and self-piteous tendencies of earthy selfdom are at last forgotten. Instead, the song of Moses and the Lamb of God revel in praise and adoration of the infinite power and wisdom of the Almighty God.
Friends, if we are followers of Jesus Christ, we can live out this wondrous truth now!
We do not have to be self-centered, self-admiring or self-piteous in the afterwards. To go one step further, we do not have to be besieged by worry, overcome by fear, filled with rage, or lost in hopelessness because of what happens on this earth.
Instead, we can choose to live life in the afterwards of what Christ has accomplished on the cross. He has vanquished sin and all of its evils that separated us from God. Jesus Christ overcame death once and for all! This is the victory we have in Christ as his saints!
This is the life we live in the afterwards!
As I conclude my study of the word ‘saint’ in Scripture, I leave us with this challenge:
How will we live in the afterwards?
Will we be known for our self-centered actions that portray worry, fear, anger and lack of trust to a world that still needs to know Christ?
Or will we be known for our love, encouragement, hospitality and generosity that demonstrate that we trust and honor Christ and what He has done for us? Will we choose to live life in the afterwards in victory and with hearts overflowing with gratitude?
For how we live in the afterwards shows the world whose we are – are we going to live like the saints of God that we are?
Thank you, Friends, for joining me in this journey as I explored the word ‘saint.’ If you want to read more of my reflections this past year, click on this link: Saints of God. Otherwise, thank you for your encouragement and care!
For me, this saint word study has been a life changer! I’m glad I did it!
Image retrieved from Share a Verse