Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Brevity of Life

"O LORD, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am! Behold, you have made my days a few handbreadths, and my lifetime is as nothing before you. Surely all mankind stands as a mere breath! Selah" -Psalm 39:4-5

Whether or not we act on it in any positive way we, at least, realize the brevity, the shortness, of "life". The even shorter days of youth and invincibility are soon replaced by a humbling reality that we are frail, and that "life" truly is precious. Our bodies degrade and eventually fail us. Not being a Danny-Downer. We are simply designed that way.

As I read this particular Psalm this morning a thought occurred. Reading these very words from the mouth of David ....do you realize that David, this man after God's own heart, has been departed from this life for 2,981 years? How many generations have come and gone since then? How's that for perspective? David is calculated to have lived from 1040–970 BC. All accounts indicate that he certainly "lived the life". He chose to live it for God. By no means perfectly, but one who was repentant and lived his life in submission to God. I'm talking BIG PICTURE here; not hair-splitting.

If someone were to read an account of your life, 3,000 years from now, what would be reflected? I suppose knowing what you did for a living, where you lived, etc. would be interesting. I find it interesting that the Apostle Paul was a "tent-maker". I find it fascinating that David was once the little brother who kinda' got looked over, and was a shepherd-boy turned king. But these things are far from what I focus on when I review their lives. Whatever they did as a livelihood, wherever they may have lived, "how" they lived is what typically fascinates us. Did they wring life's sponge for every ounce? Did they love others? Both of the persons in these examples recognized the brevity of life. David made it clear in words, praises, and songs. The Apostle Paul made it clear in his "no-hesitate" attitude and willingness to lay down his very life for the cause of Christ; and he did.

It has been said... "You haven't lived until you've found something worth dying for." You and I are going to die for something! It may, sadly, be for ourselves. It may be for our families. That is noble. Or, it could be for the cause of Christ. That is eternal.