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Monday, April 29, 2013

A Heartbeat from Eternity

No one likes to think about their own mortality, but today, I suppose I am.  I don't want to be morbid or anything like that, but I am glad I am "ready."  Do you know what I mean?

Today, on the way to the post office to drop off some packages, the traffic light changed, signaling that it was time for me to turn left.  In the split second between my foot leaving the brake pedal and
my toe landing on the accelerator, a large SUV ran a red light to turn across my path, inches away from my bumper.  The driver was going so fast, he must have taken the turn on two wheels.  All I could think was, "That was close!"

And then, there was yesterday, when I got news that a business connection I've made, a woman I was only just getting to know, had a massive heart attack and has been hospitalized in a medically-induced coma.  She was having dinner with her husband when it happened.  They were just two days away from leaving on a cruise to celebrate their wedding anniversary.  I hope that she can pull through this, but the prognosis is not good right now.

That grim news made me think of a professor who passed away when I was in college.  He was a very active man, heading the Honors program and also leading the music department.  He ran every day and did lots of charity work.  He even liked to collect and refurbish old pianos that he donated to the university.  In fact, he was helping his son guide one of those pianos on a wheeled dolly when he collapsed suddenly from a fatal heart-attack.  Above all else, he was a kind, generous man, and as far as I knew him, a Christian. Even students who weren't enrolled in his classes felt his absence.

It seems to me that death, just like life, can happen when we've been "making other plans."  It usually comes more suddenly than the people around us would have expected it; in fact, it seems to even sneak up on its victims.  This is why it is necessary to think about it and make plans for our lives with death in mind.

We should use the talents that God gave us in the time allotted to us, instead of wasting our time sowing wild oats and worrying over things that aren't important.  We shouldn't just look at this messed-up life, either.  We should look beyond it, toward eternity.  It's important to die God's friend and not His sworn enemy, because there won't be more chances to change that, later.  This is what I mean by being "ready."

Are you ready to meet God, if you had to do that today?  If you're not, I would say it is time to think about it.  It's not being morbid, either.  It's a dangerous world out there, and circumstances can change in a minute.  We see it on the news every day, unfortunately.  Don't let eternity sneak up on you.

Because time may be short, here's the short and simple way to get your heart right with God:
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. (Romans 10: 9, 10 NIV)
If you  need more explanations, I talked a little more about the why and the how of getting your heart right with God here and here, and there are plenty more if you explore my old posts.

I would love to hear from you, so if you have anything to add, you're welcome to leave me a comment. I read every one and share almost every one (I only delete the ones from spammers).