Do you ever get reminders of how short life is? When our friends or loved ones pass away unexpectedly, or when we are confronted with out own mortality through a diagnosis, or a close-call accident or other experience, we sometimes see how precariously we hold on to this life. A friend of mine just shared this past week that his wife was diagnosed with a tumor that was likely cancerous. My wife was in an accident this morning and got hit from behind while driving, and is for the most part fine, but still shaken up from the experience. I’m sure you can recount some near death experiences you have had in your lifetime, as I recall several before I even turned 18. You may even now have a prayer list with those who are facing illness or other challenges. Whenever we read or watch the news each day, we are reminded of the death and brokenness of the world in which we live, as those things make the headlines. If that’s all that happened, it may leave many of us discouraged, but there are also stories of love, kindness, hope, and redemption, that don’t always make the headlines and God is often active in making hope come from bad situations.
Show me, Lord, my life’s end
and the number of my days;
let me know how fleeting my life is.
You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
even those who seem secure. Psalm 39:4-5
When this happens, what is our response? Is seems to be one of a few things. Some get mad at God for a life ending sooner than we would like, or not sustaining us till our 90’s, but no day is guaranteed for any of us. We may also simply mourn the lives of others, or our own youth and fact that we often seem to take life for granted. We may also be much more appreciative of the life we have had, and each day we may have going forward. Often, those who survive a heart attack life with the attitude that each day they have is a blessed gift, as if they are on borrowed time now. Some of these responses are more helpful than others, but what has happened to us is not within our control, but how we live and respond going forward is. Which would you choose?
Yours in Christ,