By Joel A. Hess –
How often have you been told by your wise friends, “It’s not about the destination; it’s about the journey.” Or as one of the originators of many pseudo smart sayings, Ralph Waldo Emerson says, “Life is a journey, not a destination.” It sounds comfy, right? The saying is supposed to elevate the challenges of life so they don’t seem meaningless. The saying highlights the now-ness of life hoping to get people to embrace it rather than unknown future.
Blah, blah, blah…
On this All Saints’ Day, we are comforted not by the journey, or the ride, or whatever. We are comforted by the destination given to us for free by the One who already arrived, Jesus Christ.
As Paul says, “If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.” (1 Corinthians 15:19) If there is no certain destination, then the journey sucks.
Dear children of God, bought by the blood of His Son, it is, in fact, all about the destination—the resurrection, the new heaven and new earth, the end of sin, death and Satan, the city of God where everyone gets along without shame or secrets, doubt, or double entendres.
The destination makes the journey what it is. On this All Saints’ Day, we recall those who died because they wouldn’t shut up about Jesus and those quiet, ordinary Christians who were given a slower, lifelong burning at the stake. Our hearts are gladdened because we know their journey was not in vain. Our tears are dried because we know we will see them again—at the destination!
Still, when you can’t see that destination well and the woods seem scary and dark, look at the One who has your hand, Jesus Christ. He is taking us there through His Church full of Saints like yourselves. Listen to the voice of the Good Shepherd who speaks through His clay vessels, pointing you backward to the beginning, the cross and empty tomb, and pointing you to the ending. Come, Lord Jesus. Happy All Saints’ Day!