Today’s Scripture: And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God. Luke 12:19–21


You could find a needle in a million-mile stack of hay in less time than it would take to experience a millisecond in eternity. On Earth, we measure time in seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, and years. In eternity, time will not be measured as it is now. We can compare it to the needle and the million-mile haystack. The 3-inch needle is just a tiny speck in comparison.

The needle is your life — every word, thought, action, success, failure, victory, defeat, everything you’ve done for Christ, others, and yourself. Let the stack of hay represent eternity.

Many of us are living for the needle and forgetting about the haystack. We are like the rich man in today’s Scripture passage. He had planned out his life, earned his millions, and was enjoying retirement. The problem was he hadn’t made plans for eternity. He didn’t put his trust in Christ. He didn’t serve God and lay up treasure in Heaven. When he died, he spent eternity in misery. He didn’t start out right, so he didn’t end right.

Each of us has an opportunity to influence the quality of our eternity. Our influence (not our salvation) is measured by our actions in the present. Every day, the choices we make will prove whether we have an eternal perspective or an earthly perspective.

Think about your response to the pain and discomfort in your life. Think about the decisions you are making. Are you living for the needle or the haystack? Are you settling for what is good or waiting for God’s best? Ask God to help you keep life in its proper perspective today. Live for the haystack.


Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder