The Measure of Our Days
In a little over 24 hours, 2016 will be over.
I’m continually amazed at how fast time seems to be moving these days. When I was a kid, time was the slowest, most frustrating thing in the world. I was always waiting on something—for the school week to end, for my next birthday, for the Feast, and it always took so long.
Now here we are at the precipice of another year.
How? How did an entire year vanish so quickly? Where did it all go?
But that’s a silly question. I know the answer. It wasn’t just a year that disappeared; it was months and days and minutes. And I used them. Second by second, I used them all. Some of them wisely; some of them not so wisely. Some of them wastefully. But they weren’t taken from me. I used them, one by one, and here we are.
How did you use your seconds? Your hours and days and months? Did you spend them on things that mattered or on things that only looked like they mattered? When you look back on the great gulf of time standing between right now and this time last year, what do you have to show for it?
I don’t know about you, but I have less to show than I’d like to.
David asked, “Lord, make me to know my end, and what is the measure of my days, that I may know how frail I am” (Psalm 39:4). Moses prayed, “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12).
Those are words I wish I’d held closer to my heart this year—words I intend to think about more often this coming year. You and I, we only get so many days before it’s over. So many moments before this life comes to an end. What are we doing with them? Are we getting closer to God and to His people? Are we growing in grace and knowledge? Are we casting down the high things that exalt themselves against that knowledge? Are we repenting and overcoming and pressing forward?
Or are we saving those things for later?
That’s easier. There’s always later—until, of course, there isn’t. Until a year becomes a decade becomes half a century becomes a lifetime. Eventually, the laters run out. And then what? Where will we be? Christ talks about the good and faithful servants and the wicked and lazy ones. He never mentions a third group.
Here was Paul’s rallying cry to the church in Rome:
And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.
The day is at hand, and the days until then are slipping away. They’re not going to stop slipping, either. The responsibility—no, the privilege—is ours to use those days while we still have them.
After all, in a little over 8,784 hours, 2017 will be over.
Where will you be then?
Until next time,
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