Remember last year? The Mayans had it all figured out. Their calendar had come to and end. Winter Solstice, December 21, 2012. The end of the world.
I don’t think anyone really took it seriously. There were some “End of the World” parties. It made for a few great movies, most notably the wildly erratic, completely far-fectched and totally entertaining “2012”. Waves crashing over mountains, Woody Harrelson dying in a massive thermonuclear volcanic explosion, John Cusack racing his limo through the tectonic upheaval of Los Angeles… (Gotta love Hollywood!)
And as the 21st came to a close, there was a soft exhale and wiping of the brow, and we all steeled ourselves toward the stresses of a new day. (Those darn Mayans!) Life would go on…
Recently a reporter was talking to a cancer patient. All remedies had failed, and now the patient was laying in a hospital bed, waiting for his inevitable passage into eternity.
The reporter asked, “What’s it like waking up every day knowing you are going to die?”
Locking his gaze with the reporter, the patient smiled and asked: “What’s it like waking up every day and pretending that you’re not?”
There is a well known statistic we all often ignore: 100% of ALL people are going to die. (Sure there was Enoch and Elijah…but they are serious exceptions to the rule.)
And not one of us knows the day or the time. I may live to be old and gray…I may not make it through tomorrow. The only time we have guaranteed to us is right now.
I’m not trying to be morbid, nor am I obsessed with death. Rather, I am feeling a sense of urgency.
In Psalm 90:12, the psalmist prays: “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
When we count our days, we recognize our time in this life is limited. It is in this recognition that “a heart of wisdom” is gained! Life is not something to be wasted put off or thrown away.
We are here on this earth for a purpose: To know God, to love God, and to tell others about God’s love! Our whole lives are to be lived within this framework.
If I am not expressing his love…by my life, my actions or my words…then I am not living up to my calling.
Of course I am speaking “practically”—we work, we eat, we sleep, we play—but when we do those things for their own sake, our focus shifts. We think…”This part of my life is mine, that part of my life is God’s.”
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 that “You are not your own; you were bought at a price.” No part if my life is mine…I AM HIS!
Jesus said: “For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.” (Luke 9:24)
Do you wake up every day and pretend you are not going to die? Have you been putting off what you know God is calling you to do?
I the light of this calling, let me ask this question: If you KNEW you had 48 hours left to live…how would you go about fulfilling it?
Now go and do it!
Count your days, so that your days may count.