What do we get out of the Truth

A while ago I asked a brother about a member of his family who had left the meeting. The brother responded "He told me the Truth did nothing for him, whatever that means."

I have been thinking about that comment, and sadly I do know what that means, but I wondered what his expectations were, and what he expected the Truth to do for him? He obviously wanted more in this life, than the Truth provided. Last Sunday our exhorting brother spoke on Psalm 17 and used hymn 62 "Heavenly Father, to whose eye future things unfolded lie." Hymn 61 "Father Supreme, whose wondrous love our utmost thought so far exceeds" expresses the same idea also, that our satisfaction is not from the things we get in this life but in the hope of the things to be established when God's will shall be done on earth.

As we've done our daily Bible readings, I suppose I've been subconsciously noting the things a knowledge of God, His plan, and purpose has and hasn't provided for those whose lives are recorded in the Scriptures. In our readings of the other day Luke 7, Christ said blessed are you who weep, are hungry, are hated...it certainly doesn't sound like a pleasant lifestyle. Hebrews chapter 11, many of the Psalms, the chronicles of the lives of the kings and prophets of Israel and Judah and the patriarchs, all show us the examples of the various characters and lifestyles of those who had a knowledge of the Truth. They were of different ages, diverse stations in life from kings, princes, priests, slaves and prisoners, the very wealthy, the very poor, and the middle class. There were the godly and the ungodly and those that were neither very good or bad, but mediocre. Some were healthy and others had medical problems. Some were alone and others had large families, they were love and hated and often both. Obviously none of these material externals are guaranteed by God. What than do we get--happiness, contentment, peace & harmony? Perhaps to some degree, but we've only to look at the words of Job, Jeremiah, Hosea, Joseph, Jacob and others to know that is not necessarily so either.

A coworker of mine used to have a sign on his desk that read "This life is not your real life. If it was your real life, you would have been given better instructions." Sadly most people choose to ignore or deny the instruction book they were given. What the Truth of the Book does do for us is give us instructions for living this life, and hope for the future. Psalm 119:105 & 111 "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path...Thy testimonies have I taken as a heritage forever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart." Prov 3:16 "In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct they paths." Psalm 17:15 "As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness. I shall be satisfied, WHEN I awake, with thy likeness."

We do not look for satisfaction in this life, but when we awake to a better life, a better world order sometime in the near future. We do have an instruction book on how we should live our lives if we wish to attain all the blessing promised to those who overcome, with patience and steadfastness the trails and temptations which we all must face. Let us run the race keeping our eyes on the goal of becoming more Christlike in character so we may be like him in immortal strength and glory. The words of our hymn 80 sums it up so beautifully.

The vision tarrieth not;
At the appointed time
It speaks, by man forgot,
God's purposes sublime.
Yea, though it tarry long,
And seemeth not to grow,
Let faith and hope be strong,
The Word of God ye know.

That Word in Spirit-power,
Before the Father's face,
Awaits the promised hour
To manifest the grace.
Ye weeping saints, rejoice;
"Redemption draweth nigh;"
Soon shall His glorious voice,
His mercy testify.

Ye watchmen of the night,
Anticipate the dawn;
Pray, pray for Zion's light,
Pray for Jerusalem.
The vision hath an end;
Yea, He who shall will come
The man at God's right hand,
To build Jerusalem.

Mary Phillips