A Place Prepared

“Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9

Alphie was a millet-brained little betta fish. What did he know? Even if some inborn instinct told him that there should be more than this, his one-gallon fish bowl was the only world he’d ever experienced and he was content to live there. He had no clue that there was a better environment being prepared for him.

I’d learned that betta fish deserve a better environment than an unfiltered fish bowl, so I was setting up a proper ten-gallon aquarium where he could enjoy life to the full. He was going to have a heater and filter to keep his water fresh and pure. Bliss, betta style.

This preparation couldn’t happen overnight. An aquarium needs to go through a nitrogen cycle to develop the right kind of bacteria in the filter so it will purify the water passing through. Alphie’s tank sat on the counter for over a month as it went through this cycle; during this time I added driftwood and various ornaments that would make his new world so much more interesting. Meanwhile he circled round and round in his fish bowl, cramped maybe, but relaxed in the world he knew.

Then one day his new home was ready for him. I set his bowl beside the tank, then scooped him out in a small ladle. Now he was really confined! And scared, too; he squirmed and fought this horrible new situation. He was only a little fish; he couldn’t comprehend the big picture.

Though the transfer was uncomfortable and confusing for him, it was accomplished quickly. I placed him in his new tank and his delight was obvious. So much room! So many interesting things to explore. Constant warmth and pure water. For a little fish this was paradise!

Most of us are fairly happy in this world. Some content, some not so content in our little lives, but it’s the only space we’ve ever known. Like my betta, we’re not very willing to leave it — and we’re not at all enthused about being carried out in a small box! Our comprehension of what waits on the other side is so limited.

Unlike my little fish, however, we can know God’s plans for us. Jesus has revealed them to His followers; by faith we can grasp His words:

“In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” John 14: 2-3

And rejoice like the Psalm writer:

“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.” Psalm 23:6

A Good Friday Verse

Taken from an old hymnal…

Calvary

by W Darwood.

On Calvary’s brow my Savior died,
t’was there my Lord was crucified;
t’was on the cross He bled for me
and purchased there my pardon free.
O Calvary, dark Calvary!
Where Jesus shed his blood for me.

Mid rending rocks and darkening skies
my Savior bows his head and dies;
the opening veil reveals the way
to heaven’s joys and endless day.
O Calvary, dark Calvary!
Where Jesus shed his blood for me.

Oh Jesus, Lord, how can it be
that Thou shouldst give thy life for me,
to bear the cross and agony
in that dread hour on Calvary?
O Calvary, dark Calvary!
Where Jesus shed his blood for me.

God Has the Last Word

Back in the 60s a radio station in British Columbia, Canada, was offering a discussion period where listeners were invited to phone in and give their views of the subject at hand. One day the question for discussion was “Is God Dead?”

Folks began calling to give their opinions, pro or con. Of course the lively discussion was replete with 60’s philosophical musings and callers were getting quite worked up about the issue. It had gone on for almost an hour when suddenly lightning struck the transmitter and the station was knocked off the air for the next twelve hours.

Now, was that just “happenstance” or did God get tired of the foolish debate and decide to put an end to it?

When they were finally back on the air again someone phoned in and all he said was, “Galatians 6:7″ Those who took the time to look it up found the familiar verse: “Be not deceived; God is not mocked.”