“My! People come and go so quickly here”- Dorothy in the movie The Wizard of Oz
I’m 39 years old. I’ve been married 15 years. My children are 9 and 13.
How did that happen?
Just yesterday I was a messed up teenager who never thought I’d find someone to love me. Just yesterday I got married and thought all my problems were over. Just yesterday I held babies in my arms and thought this is the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
Today, those years are gone and I can’t ever get them back.
Now, don’t get me wrong, just because I’m going to be 40 next year doesn’t mean this is coming from some deep seeded mid life crisis or anything. Really, it’s not. But when I think about my life in terms of today’s quote, I’m reminded of how short life really is. Even though I could live to be 100 or longer, in the grand scheme of things, that’s not that long.
The Bible says “But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day.” 2Peter 3:8 (NASB) and also “Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.” James 4:14 (NASB)
Our time on this earth is short. We are only given so much time. When we get to the end and face our creator, He’s going to want to know what we did with that time. And even though we are forgiven, and he understands how difficult life is, we will still have to answer for what we did with the gift of life he gave us.
What will we say?
Will we be able to say that we did everything we could for others while we were here? Will we be able to say we took every opportunity that was offered? Will we be able to say for sure that we were the kind of person that we were meant to be? Oh, good grief I hope so.
Every day I live with mistakes and regrets of things I’ve said or didn’t say, or done or didn’t do. Every day feels like a failure sometimes. Many people don’t know this, but in the 15 years I’ve been married, I can honestly say that it’s only been probably the last 5 of those that have really been great. I was so delusional when I first got married. I also wasn’t what I consider now a Christian. Anyway, I just thought it was going to be the answer to all my problems. Never thinking that it was going to take work on my part. That it isn’t just natural wonderful. It takes work, hard work. My husband cannot fix me or my problems, only God can do that. And thankfully, he has done that. The beginning few years of being married and then adding children to the mix, were quite frankly, awful. Many times I didn’t think we would make it. However, when God needs to work on something, he uses all he can. There were several things over the years that served as “time is short, don’t waste it” moments for me. A burning church, finding new life and forgiveness in Christ, the death of a friend, countless sermons and bible studies, trips, Godly friends and their influence…..I could go on and on. Because of those times, I’ve tried to live my life remembering the above verses. Sadly I haven’t always been successful. But I know in Jesus I’m capable. I’ve also come to realize something. Remembering this helps keep my perspective.
-No argument, or disagreement about something is more important than showing and telling those around me how much I love them.
Read that again if you need to.
In light of how short our time is, would I want my husband’s last thought of me to be and angry, moody, harsh person? Would I want my children to think of me and remember yelling and impatience? For what? So I can be right? So I can be comfortable or things can be easier for me? No, nothing I’m dissatisfied with is worth that. And that’s the thing, it is usually something I am dissatisfied with. Something I don’t like about a situation. You know what though? Life is full of being dissatisfied, nothing is perfect, things don’t go the way we want. That doesn’t give me the right to treat people I love badly. It’s not their fault, I’m the one with the problem. It’s a harmful cycle that leads to regret. My life in Christ is not meant to be filled with regret. Do I want to see Jesus, the one who suffered for me, and lower my head in shame at how I lived my life? Wasting the time I’ve been given is like saying I don’t care what He did for me, that it didn’t matter. Do I have to repay him for my salvation? No, it doesn’t work like that. But should I be doing my best to live according to His word in response to what he did for me? Absolutely.
Whether we are young or old, we never know when we will take our last breath. We never know which day may be our last. And really, every day we are one step closer to death. No matter what we may think, we don’t have all the time in the world, we only have what has been given to us. No one knows how long that is.
We need to make the most of our time.
We need to remember what is really important.
We need to take God’s word for what it is and really live by it.
It is imperative.
we come and go so quickly.