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IN TOUCH WITH GOD    by Edward Heppenstall

Personal Responsibility August 31


And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. Rom. 13:11.

Would you measure life by time? A man who had been held in a concentration camp was asked what he did through the long years of imprisonment. He replied, "I survived." Under those conditions, that was no mean achievement. But it is hardly adequate for us as Christians. We live only as we are redeemed by Christ here and now. We live by expressing His love and purity now. We redeem our possessions by investing in the kingdom of God now. We must be honest with ourselves now. We must be true to God now. We must be committed to Christ now. This present moment is all we have.

The happiness men expect from time and possessions is always a little way in the future, just coming; but it never comes. Both good times and critical times have carried men near to God in gratitude and in a sense of need. Good times have carried hosts of people away from God in pride, in pleasure, and in selfishness.

Now is the time to grow spiritually. A man's life does not consist in the abundance of things which he possesses. You may add another story to your house, but your own stature remains the same. You may give a thousand valuable books to the college library, but your education does not grow with the growing number of volumes.

Our essential development now is to grow into the stature of our Lord. But the devil will see to it that we are not left to a normal development. Our lives are subject to evil influences. We cannot afford to stand still. Growth implies increase in overcoming the enemies of the Christian life, in bringing forth increasingly the fruit of the Spirit. Growth is not always easy, but it is essential now. We either continue to grow or die.

Whatever steals our nights and days from the highest and the best, whatever fills our hours with vain actions, steals from eternity. The time we spend now to reach life's purpose in Christ will be restored to us a hundredfold when He returns and we inherit the earth.

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