Thursday, November 12, 2009

A Breath, A Breeze, A Fleeting Moment

I was reading in Matthew this morning and was struck once again by Jesus' reminder that we need to be watchful and ready for the day He returns. So often we go about our days not truly thinking about the end or preparing our hearts for eternity with our Lord. I know I am guilty of this. When I sit at home, alone, not pursuing more meaningful relationships and just...existing - I am guilty of this. I woke up this morning thankful for breath in my body! I so often take it for granted, I don't even think about it. Life is so fragile, we are as a breath, a breeze, one fleeting moment. And in this moment that we have Jesus encourages us to be productive and also watchful, ready at any time for when it will all be over. "Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns. I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, 'My master is staying away a long time,' and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth." Matthew 24:45-51. Whew...

What would happen, do you think, if we truly began to understand the fragility of our lives, if we really took to heart the fact that we are as a breath...here one moment, gone the next? This life that we do have would be so much more meaningful! I know I wouldn't want to waste it watching movies all day, sitting around perusing the internet, and alone as I have been. Every touch, every prayer and interaction, every divine appointment would be so much more significant. What would it be like for me if I knew this day might very well be my last? "He who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." Matthew 24:13-14. Come on, people! Stand firm! Be watchful! Be ready! Live the lives you've been given to the fullest!

Treasure those around you, hold them close, let every interaction be meaningful to some extent. I suppose this creates an urgency to love and to see people come to Jesus, doesn't it? Jesus, give us a glimpse of our lives through Your eyes, today. Precious Father, you have given us the ability to love and give and care for others, to establish ourselves, and to be faithful in your calling to be watchful. We want to live lives of meaning and purpose, right now, where we are and with the people you have surrounded us with. Jesus, help me to be an extension of You, today. Knowing that You are coming unexpectedly should really motivate us to always be prepared. We are not to live irresponsibly, just sitting around and waiting, doing nothing, seeking self-serving pleasure, and using the fact that you haven't come yet as an excuse not to do Your work of building Your Kingdom. We shouldn't develop a false security based on precise calculations of events; or letting our curiosity about the end divert us from doing Your work. I praise You, Lord for You are everlasting and ever-faithful! "Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away." Matthew 24:35. I cling to that promise today.

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