Every true believer in Christ should prepare for the journey beyond this life, even when we don’t know when it will be. We all know that the journey must come, either at our death or at the coming of the Lord. We also know, if we are honest, it can come at any time, in the twinkling of an eye. We will all make the journey. We will all go to a place to be judged in God’s predetermined time, but only God’s elect children will continue making their journey to the gates of heaven. Only the ones who have been chosen since the foundations of the world will be welcomed into paradise (Ephesians 1:4). Make no mistake, only God’s chosen children will have a deep indescribable desire to prepare for the journey. It is our responsibility to help God’s children to prepare now. We should not take this responsibility lightly. Let us all roll up our sleeves and get to work. If you throw this article down and have no interest in preparing for the journey, then you will be most pitted amongst God’s creation and you will have a most difficult time proving your election. So, please let me encourage you to read this entire article very carefully with much prayer and meditation. Your time is coming much sooner than you think.
In a very real sense, we have all been on the journey since we were born, either on a journey toward the light or on a journey toward the darkness. Before we proceed, I pray that you have received the call from the risen Lord and are on the path to righteousness, to His eternal light. The earthly journey has been difficult for most, constantly learning and growing by putting off the old life and putting on the new life in Christ. Many have gone through tremendous upheavals in their life but have pressed on toward the light. Now, we will prepare for the last leg of our journey to a place beyond time and space, to a place where only good memories will be cherished, and bad memories will no longer exist. Those who have journeyed long to the light, in our present reality, have experienced a foretaste of things to come where the music is sweeter, the joy is exhilarating, and the peace of God transcends all understanding. The more we journey in this present reality, the more we long to complete our journey to heavenly bliss and the eradication of all evil. So, we prepare for the journey believing that God will give us all that we need. We will prepare for the journey even if others in the fallen world rise up against us. We will prepare for the journey trusting in God’s loving providence.
The biggest stumbling block for most on the journey, their upward calling in Christ Jesus, is learning how to truly forgive others from the heart. Why is this so important? Jesus said, “But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6:15). Living a life of the unforgiven must be the most horrible thing experienced in this reality, which causes many emotional and psychological problems driving them deeper into the camp of the enemy. Their constant memories of being hurt by others, real or unreal, will cast them into a life of hate and bitterness. This is the first thing that we must overcome in preparation for the journey. I have written many articles on how to truly forgive others from the heart so that in time you will completely forget the trespass and the agonizing hurt. Simply put, we must never again bring up the trespass to others to garner their sympathy, to never dwell on the trespass, and immediately cast out the agonizing memory by replacing it with another righteous thought. The good news is that Christ will give us great power to overcome the trespass and truly forgive others from the heart. Godly forgiveness will always lead to forgetfulness erasing the hurt from our souls. Let us press on in our preparation for the journey.
The next step in our preparation for the journey is to settle all remaining debts, both financial and spiritual debts. We are all familiar with having financial debt because we live in a world that has made it extremely easy for all of its citizens to live beyond their means and incur debt. This is especially true in the West and specifically the United States who keeps increasing its own debt year after year. For the Christian, however, who is on the journey no debt must be left outstanding. The Bible says, “Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law” (Romans 13:8). We all have debts, but we must not keep endlessly adding to them, but we must aggressively seek to settle all of our financial debts, which extends our love to our debtors. We must also settle our spiritual debts, especially with those who have ought with us. This is very important as we prepare for the journey. If we have offended anyone in any way, then that puts the burden on us to settle the spiritual indebtedness. Why is this so important? It is because we are our brother’s keeper and to cause them to stumble from what we have said or done has serious consequences (Matthew 18:6). As the Bible says, we must leave our offering at the altar and go first to be reconciled with our brother (Matthew 5:23-25). Let us prepare for the journey by settling all of our debts.
The next step in the preparation for the journey is to discover the weight and the sin that so easily besets us. This is a difficult thing for most of God’s children to do, in discovering their weight and besetting sin. It’s much easier to look at the big sins of others instead of making a closer examination of their own besetting sin, the weight that keeps them from effectively running the race set before them (Hebrews 12:1-2). I have referred to this as the favorite sin that most people are unwilling to give up. Is it smoking? Is it excessive drinking? Is it eating food that is knowingly bad for you? Is it looking at or lusting after the opposite sex? Is it cursing? Is it fantasizing or entertaining vain imaginations? Is it talking about or gossiping about others behind their backs? I have learned through many years of counseling that most have a favorite sin that they are unwilling to give up or even admit that it was a sin in the first place. There are a couple of things that will help you to identify your favorite sin. The first thing is to become acquainted with all of God’s beautiful commandments in the Bible, allowing them to bring conviction to our souls. The second thing we can do is to ask, “does this favorite sin destroy my body or God’s beautiful creation” (I Corinthians 3:16-17)? If you know that it will damage your body and you refuse to give up the habit, then you have identified your favorite sin. Let’s prepare for the journey by repenting today.
Finally, there is one more step that will do more than anything else in our preparation for the journey. Jesus Christ is our best example in preparing for the journey. Jesus Christ looked beyond the suffering on the Cross to the joy that was set before Him for all eternity (Hebrews 12:2). This is most difficult in a world that’s leading humanity to stay focused on one conspiracy theory or deception after another. It’s most difficult in a world that is leading humanity around by the nose through every social media post and breaking news article. It’s most difficult when death comes in the twinkling of an eye, but suffering can seem like an eternity. The toxic levels in the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink are having a profound effect upon humanity creating previously unknown illnesses, enormous suffering, and a longing for death. Humanity is dying. Natural disasters, wars, famines, and the coming apocalypse will drive all of humanity to the threshold of madness, but we will stay focused on the joy set before us and not be overcome by the tragedy in the world. In this final step we also stay focused on Jesus as the author and perfecter of our faith. Our faith is perfected through endurance by allowing every trial and tribulation to strengthen our faith. Our strengthened faith will allow us to complete the journey with joy in our hearts knowing that our preparation was not in vein. Let us all prepare for the journey, it’s much later than you think. Oh Lord, please help us to prepare for the journey.
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