Sunday, October 18, 2020

I’ve only just a minute!


Photograph - Jon Tyson - Unsplash 

Photograph - Malvestida Magazine - Unsplash



Photograph - Maks Styazhkin - Unsplash 

A lot can change in a minute. We all know the cliches about a week being a long time (in politics) and a lot can happen in a day but the truth is that life can change completely in less than a minute. 

For instance if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time something could happen that you never envisaged and it changes everything. I’ll never forget when eleven year old Rhys Jones from Liverpool was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He lived in a respectable home in a decent area of the city. His mum worked in our local Tesco Store and he was just an ordinary boy enjoying life, loving his football and playing out, as boys do. But on that sad day he died in the crossfire between two rival gangs. But on the 22nd of August 2007 everything changed in a moment. His life was ended, his parents and family were devastated and his blood was on the hands of the young man who pulled the trigger and those who were involved in providing the weapon. 

I apologise if the recall of this tragic incident drags up painful memories for any who read this. I cannot express my sympathy enough for your loss and the lifelong grief that results from it. I’m not writing to try to explain why such horrible things happen - apart from the obvious fact that people are capable of doing evil things as well as good and that they will be held responsible for what they do on the future day of judgment. I am writing to remind you of how live can change irrevocably in a moment. 

So, what are the lessons we need to learn and what difference can it make in our lives? There are many!
  1. Enjoy the moment!
  2. Value and cherish your relationships!
  3. Don’t take people for granted!
  4. Make the most of the time you have!
  5. Things are not that important, people are!
  6. Tell people you care and appreciate them while you can!
  7. Try to live without regrets!
  8. As much as depends on you live at peace with others!
  9. Forgive and forget!
The main lesson I want to stress as I finish this post is that life is brief, uncertain and for all of us will soon be over. I need, however, to clarify that statement and explain it. 

Unless you are completely new to my blog you will know that my aim is to write about life while referring to the Bible as the ultimate source of truth. I believe with all my heart that the Bible is a unique book. Written by men but sourced in God. Someone wrote many years ago that the fingerprints of God are all over it. If you are interested I have a series of videos on this topic on YouTube 


There are other books that explain why Christians place such value on the Bible. Email me at stepcar61@gmail.com and I will send you a list. 

So, what does the Bible have to say about my statement ‘life is brief, uncertain and for all of us will soon be over’. 

We certainly are reminded in the Bible of the brevity and uncertainty of life. Many verses take up this theme. Here are some examples:

James 4:13-17
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.

Proverbs 27:1
Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.

The Bible, however, does more than state the fact of the brevity and uncertainty of life - it calls us to action. The fact is we do not cease to exist upon our death. 

The Bible says ‘it is appointed unto men once to die but after this the judgment,’ Hebrews 9:27.  

We live on!

Not in these bodies initially. But we live on, either in heaven or hell. Where we go depends on choices made in this life. Jesus taught people that if they they did not believe that he was the Son of God that they would die in their sins. That is if we never realise that Christ died for our sins, if we never turn to God from our sins and take the gift God offers us (forgiveness, peace with God and eternal life) then we remain sinners and have excluded ourselves from heaven. There is a little statement in Acts chapter 13 in the Bible. It shocks me but it is true. It’s says that people who reject the Bible and it’s message have decided that ‘they are unworthy of eternal life’. God offers eternal life - do you think you don’t need it. 

Yes, life is uncertain. It’s brief. It is agonising and traumatic for many but it can be better and there is hope. There is better future on offer but only through the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Please get in touch if I can help. 

Stephen
 
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