Got a birthday card last month from my wife. Really was special. Got me thinking. The American Greetings card goes,
To the man I love.
This is the life. You and me together. Every day.
More ups and downs and more love than we ever thought possible.
This is it. This is the life.
This is our life….
And I’m so glad to be sharing it with you.
This is it! THIS is my life. I need reminders like this card. Mundane hours lull my mind to dullness, robbing my joy of living. I still hear Dad remind me, as us kids slumped there at the dinner table, “Sit up straight..!” Every day I need to “Sit up straight”. Realize anew: “This is the life.” I get one go at it! The Lord made me this way, gave me what I am, this way – and He wants me to do the best I can with what he started me off with, and with everything that comes along the way. Every day is new every morning, and I am blessed to be here.
THIS is it! This is my life. God gave it to me. Every moment. I can do with it whatever I choose. Not every moment is stellar, but… this moment is part of it all. Put it all together, and it makes up — my life. There’s no sense in waiting for something else to come along! What else!? This is it! THIS is my life.
I am especially privileged to be who I am. (I could have been — – you! Ha! Just kidding!) I am humbled with the thought of being somebody else not so fortunate. Who am I to have been so blessed!? I am reminded of the responsibility that goes with blessings. Having been so blessed, I want to be a blessing to others.
I could have been Paco, living in and eating from a five acre dump. I could have had an alcoholic and abusive mom and dad. I could have been born of terrorist parents, living for Mohammed. I could have been some primitive native, born in some hot, humid jungle. I could have been born with an IQ of 25, raised in neglect and poverty in Detroit. I could have done drugs and become some sorry-ass loser without a thought for tomorrow, consequences and eternal values. I could have been born tall, dark and handsome. I could have been born to be 6´8¨ tall. But no, God made me – me. ¨I am what I am by the grace of God.¨ And I am responsible before God for what I am capable of.
What I am is what I make of it. How I act towards others, what I reflect to others with my demeanor, my face, my voice and inflections, my attitude, my actions… are all the parts of what make me who I am.
God is shaping me, forming me, molding me – to be more and more like Christ. On that final earth day, I want to step into eternity without the need of a major fix-it job required by the angels before they’ll let me continue down the entry path to celebrate Christ and then – to the banquet hall! I want my life now to fit smoothly into heaven’s new body style! (I know that’s not REALLY possible, but you know what I mean.) I want to be so much like Christ now, that on that day I will be in-n-out of the fix-it chamber so fast I’ll be moshing in the mosh pit, one of the first to celebrate Eternal Life – uninhibited, frenzied joy!
Why must I wait to be perfected by Christ – in heaven? I don’t have to wait! I can be maleable now, adaptable now. Get rid of this stubborness. Let Him conform me to His will now, today… while in my last days here. I can do that!
I have had 62 years here, and I’m still going strong, more or less. I have been smart, off-and-on, for most of my life. I have been stupid too. And I have been very poor – for lengthy years! (Although rich even then – in comparison with 90% of the world.) But, I have been mostly healthy, wealthy and wise – even with the many missteps along the way. I thank God and my wife, family and friends, for mercy, forgiveness, and patience with me. Thankfully God is not finished with me yet!
Whether it be one more hour, or three more decades… I am ready for that crossing of the threshhold of eternity! But until that final moment in time, I am pressing-on, living in the now, making the most of what God puts before me. I´m makin´time! Making time count.
As a friend wrote to me on a birthday card,
May the Lord add blessings to you this year!