Tuesday, January 15, 2013


In my devotional time a few weeks ago, I felt the urge to put some thoughts into a short rhyme:

"Adore the Designer of all things real.
Enjoy these beauties, but hurry along. . . .
Resist temptations to linger or kneel.
Our journey is brief; let's finish the Song

Feeling the body’s approaching need for retirement stimulates thoughts about mortality. Health issues and aging both tend to fix our gaze on the sand that keeps trickling through the hourglass of life. To contemplate departing from this world isn’t necessarily unhealthy. Ancient Christian monks made it a spiritual discipline to meditate on the day of their death, to help them focus on living each day well. Our concern should not be about how much sand is left to fall, but on the way we live while it’s falling.

Saying this reminds me of writing similar thoughts some years ago in a short essay called “It’s a Short Trip.” Although what I shared then is related, my little poem points toward another facet of concern: the finish.

I love the Lord, and I love the beauties of His creation.  As long as that former love includes loving my neighbor, it is entirely safe. But that latter love of the beauty God has created can be distractive.

I’ve spent hours collecting photo references off the Internet for art compositions that I want to paint someday. Some of that time could have been better invested in painting a few of them. It would have produced more tangible forms of appreciation to our Creator than my own personal delight in collecting them. If painting is part of the “song” God is calling me to sing, then lingering long among creation’s attractions is procrastination.

No one knows what tomorrow may bring. The good that we wish to do, whether by creating things to share with others or by showing love in word and deed, must be performed while we have the opportunity and the strength. Procrastination not only affects our own happiness. Others wait for our kind communications or helpful actions. If the Lord is prompting us to be a blessing to those around us, let’s not put it off till an unknown tomorrow. Today, let’s send that gift, write that email, give that phone call, make that visit. As the cartoon above says, "Do it now!"

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