Thursday, February 24, 2011

Time is a mist.

I am only a few months away from my 53rd birthday and I’ve been thinking about the years behind and the years ahead. Clearly, after passing the half century mark it is most likely that I have fewer years in front of me than I have behind.

I recall hearing (and saying) that time seems to go faster as we get older. Those school years seemed like they would never end – but as an adult time seems to slip away far too quickly (although the hours at work still seem much slower than hours at home).

I’m beginning to see the reality of growing older and how short our time on earth is.

“What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.”

I’m not sure which experience gives the greater understanding of the passing of time and the aging process. Is it my own physical body, its greying/receding hair; the increase in aches and pains; the recognition that I’m not as agile or fast on my feet? Is it the realisation that the daughter I saw being born into this world is now 26 and married? Or maybe it’s seeing my parents fading away with old age and ill health, my dad barely holding on to prove a doctor’s predicted 9 month lifespan has been wrong by at least three years…

Should I still be around twenty years in the future I would have exceeded my “three score years and ten”. I look back twenty years and it seems so close, almost yesterday. At that time I was at University as a “mature age” student, hoping for a new start in life. Putting 13 years of mundane work behind me to increase the chances of getting a job I enjoyed.

While those hoped for changes were never realised and I didn’t seem to gain anything from my studies, I did eventually regain a faith that had slipped away years earlier. No, not merely a regained faith – a renewed faith! In earlier days I had been tossed to and fro from one appealing teaching to another, always searching for something real to give substance to what I knew I needed to believe. I relied on others to show me the way, but each time found my guide was just as desperate and blind as I was.

This renewed faith is more focused. It centres on God and His word rather than the latest “spiritual” fad to hit the church. It centres on God and His word instead of theologies that have been handed down through church systems. It centres on God and His word instead of popular religious opinion.

The Bible describes this as a narrow way accessible through a narrow gate. It is the only way according to Jesus. The way He established. The way centred on Him. He is the Way.

And it is that Way; it is Jesus and Him alone who makes the reality of aging, the reality of the shortness of life, a non-issue.
While this life may be brief – it’s not the be all and end all. There is something far more glorious to come.

“Jesus said … ‘I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.’”

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.


Lee Giles said...

Happy Birthday :) Praise God for your life in Him, for renewed faith and for a steadfast focus on Him.

Onesimus said...

Thanks Lee,
My birthday is still three months away but I'll file your greeting away safely until then :)

The article started out with one intention but transformed into something totally different, hopefully placing the emphasis where it belongs - on Jesus and life in Him.

Onesimus said...

Faithful Follower,
I apologise for not publishing your comment. However I can not approve the link it contains without viewing the video first.

Unfortunately I have been unable to watch it, and present circumstances don't make it likely that I'll have the opportunity in the near future.

Bless you