“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.’ 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 4:13-14
Our time on this planet is precious, not just because of it’s brevity, but because of what God wants to accomplish through us. In my attempts to reclaim my time, home, and health, I’ve come face to face with my wasteful behaviors. Even now, a clock hangs on the wall behind me. I hear it ticking away the seconds. I feel a sense of urgency as it marks the time it takes to complete this post. I ask myself, am I spending these moments wisely?
Although the smell isn’t as strong at the moment, I know the air here is still very much filled with smoke from fires nearby. The emergency workers sacrificially fighting those fires know that time is so important. We never could have imagined what this summer would be like for Colorado. It’s been one filled with record high heat, drought, and devastating fires. We couldn’t know, but God knew. He knew what was in store.
More than fifteen years ago, I didn’t know I would bury my first born son, leaving me grieving and my faith shaken. For nine months, I dreamed of his arrival and then one day he was gone. Five years ago, we had no idea the Husband would be let go from a project that ran out of money, leaving us stranded in Maryland, strapped into a lease with no income. For a year and a half we planned for how we would use the money from that contract, and then one day it was gone. Several months ago ago, I couldn’t have known I would seriously injure my knees during a freak fall and then a couple of months later, break my toe during a routine maneuver in my Tae Kwon Do class. For months I had planned out my running schedule in preparation for running two half-marathons this summer. I had dreams of setting new personal records, and then they were gone.
What I’m learning is that I don’t have next year, next month, or even the next day. Gracious, I may not even have another hour. What I do have is now. This moment is a gift from the Lord. This moment can be used to pray without ceasing; to praise His Name; to seek His face. No matter the number of days, hours, minutes, or seconds I have on this planet… no matter the grief, hardship, or pain I may endure during that time… I have reassurance that I matter. The above verse makes our lives sound somewhat insignificant when read outside the context of God’s entire Word; However, He declares, “Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?… Do not I fill heaven and earth?” There is no shortage of evidence that our time here is significant to God and He has plans for that time.
Lord, use my “now” for Your benefit and glory!