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Living With The End in Mind

Time is such a precious thing.

For most of us, it is precious because with live with the knowledge that we do not have a limitless supply of it.  We all wish we could find a 25th hour in the day.  I have petitioned the Lord for such to no avail.  On a larger scale, however, we are oblivious to what "not enough time" really means.

As Paul reminds us in 1 Corinthians 15:24, the end WILL come.  Time eventually runs out.  The odd thing is that I often live in ignorance of that truth.  I live as if I have all the time in world to do the things I really need to do - things like loving my wife well or building Christ into the lives of my children.   I live with a youthful, though misguided, notion that I am in control of my days and my time.  William Henley's concluding words to his poem, Invictus, resonate somewhere deep within me:

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate:

I am the captain of my soul.

Those word are so American, aren't they?  I want them to be true.  I want to be, and often believe I am, the "captain of my soul."  While it sounds inspiring, it's also a lie.  I don't control my life or my time.  Life circumstances reveal this to me over and over again.  But here's what I've found:  when I live with the end in mind - when I realize that time is not in my control and that my time is limited - I discover how precious every day becomes.  I discover that even in my limited form, I have been given this life - this day - this hour - and as a gift of God, and I want to live it with all the joy and all the love that I can.  The urgent things seem less urgent.  My true priorities fall more easily into place.  I sense God's presence more clearly and more deeply.

Yes, the end does come, but far from some morbid obsession, living with the end in mind has allowed my life to become more of what God wants it to be.  Not a bad way to start each day..


Thanks for reminding me that wonderful lines in one of my favorite poem, The Invictus. I agree that time is precious. So, we should used it rightly, because once its wasted, we cannot bring it back again. - Aldo Disorbo

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As a pastor and writer, David's passion is to help others identify the vital signs for creating and sustaining a healthy spiritual life.