In Thornton Wilder's great play Our Town the third act opens with the narrator walking amid the graves in the town cemetery of Grover's Corners, New Hampshire. He stops and says to the audience, "An awful lot of sorrow has been quieted up here." Then he pauses and says: “We all know that something is eternal. And it ain't houses...and it ain't earth and it ain't even the stars...Everybody knows...that something has to do with human beings...They're waitin' for something that they feel is coming! Something important, and great. Aren't they waitin' for the eternal part of them to come out in the clear?"
These last weeks of the church year we focus on the final things, what is eternal. In the gospels, Christ teaches about the coming destruction of the temple, but by implication he reminds us that the world and the universe as it now exists will also come to an end. A time will come when His Kingdom will be complete, when God's plan for the universe will be realized. While we do not know when that day will be, in spite of many times during history when people thought they knew, it will surely come. The challenge for us is whether we will belong to that Kingdom. And the way we know that is if we are Kingdom people now in our present age. Do we truly belong to Christ now? Do we live inspired by His eternal truth? If so, then one day the Kingdom will be eternally ours. As C.S. Lewis says, ”All that is not eternal is eternally out of date."