Boletim dos Obreiros

Life is Beautiful

"Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. " Philippians 4:4-7 (NKJV)

In 2007 a well known representative of Brazilian drama left this life. As an artist his talent was unquestionable but his last statement was something of a great disappointment for those who so much admired him. When he left he revealed that he had passed away without really knowing this life.

There was no hope in him. At the end of his days he came to the unfortunate conclusion that if there were no death life would very boring, that to live eternally would be tedious and that with death all comes to an end, just like it happens with any little animal. That which would be a blatant defeat – death – meant a victory to him. What a terrible delirium to think in this way. If our hope were limited to this life only we would be the most pitiable of men (1 Corinthians 15:19 - NKJV)..

For those who live this life without any expectation of a glorious ever after their final days are of total despondency. In these moments solitude is accentuated, the valley of anguish seems to prolong into an unending path, the pit of despondency and of frustrations appears to be bottomless and, as we saw in this statement, it will not be in the renown, in the rubbish-heap that this world offers, that solutions will be found.

The Preacher says that there is nothing new under the sun save eternal sameness. He had perceived that under the sun the swift did not always win the race; the strong didn’t always triumph in the dispute; the wise did not always have food; the prudent weren’t always rich; the learned didn’t always get prestige; for time and chance affect everybody. He wanted to know if there was anything under heaven which was worth while during the few days of human life here. After having seen and heard everything under the sun, his conclusion is irrefutable: “Fear God and keep His commandments… For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13,14 - (NKJV). Paradoxical as it may seem, life is truly beautiful. It is beautiful when there is a certainty that there is something exceedingly important “above the Sun”, the Lord our God.

As we read in the introductory text, life is joyful, therefore beautiful, because “the Lord is at hand”. We must not allow ourselves to be taken by the pleasure of this world, following the wide ways of this world without God, for then life will be made up of anguishes and afflictions bearing in mind that the Lord will be far away from a licentious life.

Many become frustrated thinking that the Lord guarantees to His own a life without pain or tears; smiles without suffering; sunny days without rain. Truly, what He promises is the necessary strength for each day, comfort for tears and light for our walk. Victory is for he who does not fear defeat, who has full conviction of the hereafter. To avoid being affected by existential tiredness, we must always remember that we are already victorious through the Lord Jesus. He said Himself: "…In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:33 (NKJV). Life is beautiful because of this! Let us not look behind, what has gone has gone. What we lost we lost. Never go back! Let us always look forward for before us is the hereafter of glory and splendour.

We should avoid looking at things around us from the dark side of life. We should avoid falling into the error of many who, moved by the deceptive desire of the heart try to make a delusion, a doll of God, trying to control Him to conquer material things, induced as they are by the foolish theory of prosperity, thinking that life is beautiful in the measure by which we reach the possession of material goods. What matters is to seek the Kingdom of God, other things are secondary. The Father gives us the things we need and not those we covet. (Matthew 6:32-33).

We must therefore be content when we feel the uneasiness of this life which at times may reach us. May meekness chase away the feeling of revolt which may come into our heart, let us seek strength in God, not in ourselves, so that we may not feel fear; let us seek to rejoice always so as not to be brought down by the disappointments and circumstances of life. Let us have the firm conviction that the Lord is on our side while we keep ourselves in fellowship with Him.

The Psalmist says, with full assurance, that the Lord “calms the storm, so that its waves are still.” Those who trust in Him rejoice in the certainty of calm in a tempestuous world. An absolute conviction must be had that God will take us, at the end of our journey here, to a secure and desired haven, and for this reason thanks must be given to the Lord for His goodness and for His marvels (Psalm 107:29-31). Let us cultivate in ourselves the same experience of Paul, who even when hard pressed on every side, was not crushed; when perplexed, was not in despair; when persecuted, knew he was not forsaken; he could be struck down, but never destroyed (2 Corinthians 4:8-9 - NKJV).

To rest upon the only God who is powerful to make a cloudy morning brilliant, it is not necessary to have visions to know that He is in control of all things. There must be total trust in us that in the proximity of His arms there is serenity for being His beloved children. While we are here nothing escapes the perception of our God. Just a command of His and the fury of the waves of this life vanishes, leaving us the same tranquillity of a sunset by the seaside. He comforts our hearts with the greatest of affections, His Love.

Let us not allow our convictions to be disturbed and our desire to live be lost, even if some moments of our life become extremely painful. Let us not lose the desire to love, even if the same sentiment isn’t returned by the person we love most. Let us not lose the joy of living even when the tears come to our eyes and run down our faces, for we must never forget that God loves us in an eternal and grandiose manner. May even the smallest particle of joy and hope within us be capable of transforming anything which is around us, because life is beautiful.

May God allow this to be so in 2008 for each one of us. Happy new year!