Door Handles and Eternity
A few weeks ago, I had to replace the door handle assembly on our front door after the old one finally gave out. The assembly that I replaced was the unit that came with our house when we moved into our new house in 2004. As I was replacing the door handle, I started to get super sentimental (I have a tendency to do that!) about all that had happened and all the people who had touched this door handle. When we moved into our house, our kids were 5,3 and 1…. They are now 21,19 and 17! I began thinking about all the friends that had touched this door handle on their way into our house and the fun times we’ve had with people who touched that door handle as the first engagement here at our house. As I continued thinking about the people who had touched this door handle, my thoughts also thought about the relatives who’d walked through our door, touching this door handle….. Relatives that are no longer with us. From 2016 to 2019, I lost three close relatives: My Mom to bone cancer, my Dad to Alzheimer’s and my Grandmother to old age. Each of them touched this door handle repeatedly…. In fact, for about 13 years, our house was the ‘go to’ house for all major holidays and birthday celebrations. We had a lot of fun celebrations at our house and all the people coming in and out touched this doorknob.
And sadly, of the three family members that are no longer with us, to my knowledge, none of those three came to faith in Christ. Of course, I’m hopeful that I may see them again, but I’m quite doubtful that I will. As I’ve contemplated that fact, a few key thoughts have come to mind:
- To those who have family members who have not ‘received and believed’ in Christ, tell them the Gospel regularly. Once they are no longer with you, or if you leave this earth before they do, you’ll run out of chances. Do your best to avoid the thoughts of ‘what else could I have done’ after they are gone.
- Far too often, I think I could have done more to convince them to come to Christ. In reality, once they repeatedly heard the Gospel, it was up to them to make a determination about surrendering their lives to Christ.
- That doesn’t mean that I’m not going to be a little sad that they didn’t choose Christ. To have had the opportunity to spend with my Mom and my Dad praising God for all eternity would have been so great! It would have been great for a few reasons: First, what awaits the Christ-follower in Heaven is so incredible, it’s hard to describe. To experience it with them? Incredible. Secondly, I had a fractured relationship with both of them, and to have seen full reconciliation in light of God’s glory. Incredible. And what a testimony both of them would have had on earth had they come to Christ.
So my encouragement to those reading is simple. Preach the Gospel boldly. Love those inside and outside your family deeply. And take advantage of every day, every interaction, every God-given connection point, since you don’t know when you’ll have your last. Amen?