Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What are you living for?

Over the last year, I feel like I have known so many young people who have died.  Not close friends of mine but acquaintances or friends of friends.  Some have died from cancer or other health issues but many died suddenly.  With no time to prepare, they were gone.  Accidents, hunting accidents or a sudden health crisis.  At 42, I can't help but look my mortality in the face and realize how short our lives are.

A lady in our women's ministry who has led a Bible study for years and was the picture of health until last week, suddenly had a heart issue and she met Jesus today.   It has left many shocked but those who know her know she loved Jesus with all of her heart and probably was dancing on those streets of gold this morning.  It's hard to be sad when you know someone spent their life preparing for heaven.  She spent all of her time here on earth sharing about Jesus and mentoring women in the Bible.  She even talked to a friend of mine on the phone yesterday and said "The Lord orders our steps".

It makes me dwell on a verse my friend Maegan shared this morning, "Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring".  None of us know when our last day may come.  That shouldn't mean we live with a sense of anxiety or fear that we could die at any time but I think it should help us to strive to live with a sense of purpose.  That we should live our lives focusing on what really matters.

Scott is very focused on us planning for retirement.  I'm so thankful he is working to prepare us but I am always saying "who knows if we will make it to retirement?"  I'm not dumb enough to honestly think we shouldn't plan for retirement just because it seems like so many around me aren't making it to that day but I also don't want to solely focus on the future when the present is so important.

Rick Warren wrote a book about it but what does it really mean to have a "Purpose Driven Life"? What does it mean to live looking towards heaven?  This life is so short in comparison to our eternity.  I don't want to think I've dwindled my days away doing things that don't really matter.

That doesn't mean I need to move to Africa or be speaking to huge audiences to make a difference or to share my faith.  I have three little lives to mold and that may be the legacy I leave.  I can be kind to those around me and be faithful in the places God has me.  Even if that just means helping with preschool choir or serving in women's ministry.  It may not seem significant but God uses us all in different ways.

What does living intentionally and purposely mean to you?

We mourn for those who leave us but when they know Jesus - I can't help but be happy for them if not a little envious.  This world is not our home and it gets a little less appealing every day.  I long for a place where there is not sadness or crying or fighting on social media. ha!

I spend most of my days caught up in the minutiae of laundry and lunches and homework and can lose sight that this might be my last day - what can I do today to share the Gospel? What can I do today to share Jesus' love with someone else.  There is a lot of focus these days on saying No and finding white space in your life but I think we honestly need to do more of saying Yes.  We need to be a little more selfless and serve needs and see beyond the busyness of our own lives and find ways to be Jesus hands and feet.  Even if that means we are a little more tired or have a little less "me time" or a little less extra money.  We are here to know God and make Him known.

It's not about us.

This video by Francis Chan is so impactful and exactly addresses what I've been thinking so much about lately.  If you haven't seen it - don't miss it.

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