This past weekend our men attended a retreat on “The Legacy of a Godly Man”. Our speaker was Mark Crocco. Mark taught on various aspects of leaving a legacy. What struck me the most was when Mark was teaching on “A Legacy of Eternal Impact”. I was struck particularly by two passages Mark brought together in this session.
In the second letter Paul wrote to the Corinthians, he speaks of his suffering. We read in the 4th chapter, “for our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternity weight of glory” (v. 17 NKJV). Paul speaks of a “momentary” suffering for the cause of Christ that will in eternity be rewarded in an unbelievable fashion. This reward will be beyond comparison or comprehension. Paul speaks of this as having suffered just a little bit, he describes it as a “light affliction”.
But then Mark pointed out the description of Paul’s “light affliction” that is seen in the 11th chapter of 2 Corinthians. Beginning in verse 23 Paul writes “ Are they ministers of Christ?—I speak as a fool—I am more: in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often. From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness— besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches.”(v.23-28 NKJV). That certainly doesn’t seem like “light affliction” to me, how about you? And Paul hasn’t even been shipwrecked on his way to Rome yet. But what Paul knew is that this life will soon pass away but only what’s done for eternity will last.
His philosophy is seen again in 2 Corinthians in the 4th chapter where he writes “ while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (v.18, NKJV). The challenge for you and I is that we should be storing up treasures in heaven, utilizing every moment and breathe God has given us. That’s building a legacy of eternal impact.
All for Christ,
Pastor Rich Sivo