What crosses your mind when you think about tomorrow?
What first comes to mind when thinking about the coming day are the following:
*my to-do list
*my needs and desires
On the average day, we don’t think about God very much. Most days, we live caught up in ourselves.
Do you know why this is?
One of the reasons is that we truly forget that life is, as the Bible says, “a vapor”. There is nothing normal about today. Do you realize how many things most function properly today for you to survive?
Those of us who are healthy don’t think too much about how our internal organs must function to keep us alive. A thousand things (at least) must operate correctly today for you to continue your life.
At any given moment, one of these items essential to life could cease its function and we could be standing before God. If you really possess that knowledge, how does it change the way you live?
“Intellectually we all know that we will die, but we do not really know it in the sense that the knowledge becomes a part of us. We do not know it in the sense of living as though it were true. On the contrary, we tend to live as though our lives would go on forever.” Frederick Buechner
Forgetting that your life is but a vapor has another consequence we don’t often recognize. Living for the “here and now” causes eternally important issues to be ignored and temporal issues to be magnified.
When I’m consumed by my problems—my life, my family, my job, etc. – by-products called worry and stress ease their way into my life.
Let’s look at these two more closely.
Worry implies that we don’t quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough, or loving enough to take care of what’s happening in our lives.
Do you see how the focus on the temporary has eclipsed the eternal?
Stress says that the things we are involved in are important enough to merit our impatience, our lack of grace toward others, or our tight grip of control.
So, here’s what we are actually believing: it’s okay to sin through worry and stress and not trust God because the stuff in my life is somehow exceptional. Worry and stress reek of arrogance.
Worry and stress immediately enter when we forget the eternal.
How important are your appointments and to-do lists going to be 20 seconds after you have died?
Why do we live as though life were centered around us?
1 Corinthians 10:31 – “so whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it ALL for the glory of God.”
Many of you with children remember what it was like to hold them in your arms when they were infants. Do you remember how fragile they appeared?
Tell me, when will they no longer be fragile? When they are two? Eight? In junior high? College? When they are married? When they have kids? When they are old?
It’s humbling to realize how little control we really have! Instead of letting this knowledge produce fear, why don’t you let it produce a heart that reaches out to God?
Wikipedia states that around 125,000,000,000 people have lived on the earth. About 50 years after you die, no one will remember you. At least they won’t remember the car you drove, the clothes you wore, or the school you attended. So, tell me again, why is it so important to live life as though it centers around us?
Francis Chan tells the story of a young woman named Brooke Bronkowski. In an essay written at twelve, Brooke wrote the following:
“I have my life before me. I will give others the joy I have and God will give me more joy. I will do everything God tells me to do. I will follow the footsteps of God. I will do my best!”
During her freshman year, Brooke was in a car accident while going to the movies. Her life here on earth ended but her impact didn’t. 1500 people attended her memorial service. 200 students gave their lives to Jesus at the end of the service. Ushers gave Bibles to each of the students. They were Bibles Brooke had in her garage to give to unsaved friends.
Many people will die tomorrow without knowing Jesus. Their funerals will be filled with people stretching the truth in order to create a semblance of a meaningful life. No one would dare say something unkind but that doesn’t change the thoughts we secretly think about the person who died: He wasn’t really that great of a person.
You may be thinking, “But what about me. Can’t I spend too much time serving others and giving too much away?”
I wonder if you will say that after your dead.
1 Corinthians 3:13-15 – “His work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.”
Our lives here are short and nothing else matters except our God and King. We have to realize this and believe it enough that it changes how we live.