the face of God

In the sun’s rising is its setting. In the flower’s blooming is its withering. In the day’s coming is its going, never to be seen again.

In each moment, the world shows us the nature of its impermanence.

In each moment, it says to us, “There is nothing here that lasts. Not joy, not sorrow. Not love, not pain. The things you hold solid in the palms of your hands turn by seconds to dust on the wind.”

Yet still? We persist. We cling. We yearn. To find forever in those things which were made to disappear.

We seek constancy in the floors of ever-shifting sands. We seek stability in homes built on the backs of rolling waves. We pour the grains of our lives through the mouths of grinning sieves—ever in search of an unattainable phantom, an impossible glimmer of gold.

We do all this, despite being creatures whose very bodies indicate to us the folly of our enterprise. Who bemoan, “Look! At the graying of your hair! At the creasing of your skin! At the thinning of your bones! You have hitched the saddlebags of eternity to the back of the wrong horse. You were never sent here to stay.”

The span of this world is nothing more than the stretch of the blacksmith’s forge. Here, we are sent to feel it all: beauty and terror. We are made to bear it both: water and flame. Here, the chisel strikes: All that has happened has only been to bring you to where you are now! The hammer pounds: All that will come will only be to mold you into who you must be!

Melt-down and cut. Split-down and drawn. Welded, and with strength, re-formed.

This world has never been our final destination. The people, the places, the things—have all always been the means, never the end. They have always been secondary to what truly matters: us, our souls, and our relationship with the All-Loving, All-Seeing Lord who has placed us here to determine who it is who will emerge most excellent in character, most sincere in intention, and most virtuous in bringing forth deeds.

The sun rises and sets. The flower blooms and withers. The day comes and goes, never to be seen again.

At the end of all things, all things must perish.

Only the face of God remains.

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