Monday, December 30, 2013
A Most Precious Gift
One of Wendell Berry's character is an old guy named Jayber Crow who shares his life from the perspective of one who has more memory than future. When I met Jayber Crow in those pages, I felt that I had found a kindred spirit. As I stand here at the end of one year, awaiting still another one to begin, I am aware that more are behind than are ahead. My memory is getting longer and my future is getting shorter. There is nothing morbid about this realization, only recognition of a truth that is as much a part of my life as anything that is past.
And with this perspective, I am learning how precious is the gift of time. I have wasted more than my share of it. I have lived in it while thinking only of how I could get from the moment where I was to the moment in which I wanted to be. Too often I have seen it as a means to an end instead of something to be experienced and enjoyed and embraced for the value it had in the present moment. Too many times it was something to be exploited in some way for personal gain, and in the process, I failed to understand what a precious gift it was that God was giving me.
Where I grew up, folks always said it was important to keep land if you had it because no more was being made. It is even more true of this gift of time. There is only one moment which is defined as the present. It is the only thing that has any kind of guarantee. Each one of those present moments which God grants to us is the most precious gift in all of life. More important than money. More important than what ego pursuits bring. It is extremely important. In verse 10 of the 5th chapter of Ephesians, the Word of God says, "Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord." No better use than this can we make of the time that God chooses to give to us.