At Rayleigh Vineyard we get people to give small (2-3 minute) talks on a theme, sharing their personal thoughts on the bible, and being a little bit of extra theology and bible study to get people thinking. We call this a Golden Nugget.
I thought I would share mine occasionally as they a big bit of theology I do on a regular basis and are good practice for preaching. You can check out the Golden Nuggets and Sunday preaches via the website here. This is a spare one that I did just in case. The theme has now moved now so I thought I’d share it with you!
This theme: what page from the Bible would you take to a desert island.
“For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
Philippians 1:21 is tattooed upon my back; this makes it a really easy verse to take with me to a desert island as it won’t even get soggy.
I put it there partly to serve as a talking point to anyone that might see it: it’s hard not to tell people about Christ when His name is literally written on your skin, you have to explain why it was that important.
I also put it there to remind myself about life and death. Death has lost its sting, has no control over us, and at this point is just a doorway into God’s arms. And yet it can be something we are nervous about and something we, in our lowest darkest moments long for. “Lord take me now!” It may be said as a joke sometimes but it is a request that suggests we sometimes just don’t want to go on struggling.
However, in Christ our lives are sacrificed, not like other religions in death, but in life. To live is to act for God, follow His path, wait until our job is done. To live is Christ and to die is gain. How much greater might it feel to be with God forever? Of course but that’s not right now. One day, not today.
On a desert island, however beautiful it might be, I can believe life would be hard. But Philippians reminds me that I will continue to live so long as there is something for me to do. It may be founding a church, a ministry, or mission. It could be loving that one person, one stranger, one time.
Put bluntly, until God says otherwise, we are all too busy to die, there is so much more to do.