A quiet house. No little feet pitter-pattering through the halls and no giggles waffling from the next room. No cartoons playing on the TV, an empty table at dinner, and no urgent questioning of lost articles of clothing. How did we get to this? I miss it!! Somedays I wish I could go back and just be in the moments with my kids instead of always rushing to get from one thing to the next. Sadly, there are no do-overs, no rewinding. When you are raising kids or in a marriage relationship it is easy to lose sight of what is important even though it is right in front of you. You allow the business of the world around you dictate your actions, your schedule and before long, those quiet and intimate, precious and teachable moments with those you love are stolen.
God says that our days are like an evening shadow and that we wither away like grass. (Psalm 102:11) In James 4:14 God asks us “For what is your life?” He then proceeds to answer his question with, “It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” He tells us that we don’t even know what will happen tomorrow yet we go about making plans to do this or that (still vs. 13-14). There is little thought, on our part as to what God would have us do with our time.
As I look to the future with a grandbaby on the way and a son’s marriage in the planning, I am never more aware of how quickly our time on this earth goes. With each birthday I can see, physically, how the “flesh” is withering and the bones are creaking and aching.
I know that I cannot get back the days, the times that have past, but I can hit re-start for the future. I can change the way I spend each of my days. I can take the time to be more intentional with those in my life, slowing down, pausing for those special, intimate and precious moments. I can make sure that I hug a little longer and tighter and I can make sure that those I love know that not only do I love them deeply but that Jesus loves them even more. What is your life? What is important to you? What do you spend your days cultivating? It is important to me, that those I love know with certainty, where they will spend eternity. To achieve this, I need to cultivate a relationship with them that is steeped in the love of Jesus, to help educate and ground them in His promises. The Apostle Paul said in Acts 20:24, “What matters most to me is to finish what God started: the job the Master Jesus gave me of letting everyone I meet know all about this incredibly extravagant generosity of God.” Psalm 102:23-24 contrasts for us the brevity of our own lives with the eternality of God. It gives us the security that God will keep his promises to many faithful people of tomorrow that are descended from the faithful of today. If tomorrow, your life vanishes, where will you be? What will be left behind that you no longer have the opportunity to change? Though our lives are shortlived, Psalm 102:12 makes plain to us what does last forever – “But you, O Lord, shall endure forever, and the remembrance of Your Name to all generations.” Is it not worth everything to ensure that you and your loved ones will be together forever? How much time do you have to make this change? Ask yourself, “how long does a vapor last?”