Beside the frontage road stands a cross—a small cross, maybe two or three feet tall, its base adorned with flowers. I drive by it every day on my way home from work. Don’t know when it was put there, but you can tell it’s fresh. Hasn’t been there long. Maybe a few months.
O LORD, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am! | Psalm 39:4
Isn’t it strange how seldom we think about death?
We live our days as if we had
an endless supply of them.
Perhaps because of that, we spend so much time doing stuff that doesn’t matter long-term. Occasionally a jarring event or convicting message will jolt us out of this short-sighted stupor, but before too long we get sucked into the minutiae of everyday life, again losing sight of the big picture. We’re like the driver of a car, focusing on drops of rain on the windshield instead of gazing down the road to see where we’re going. How oblivious we are to our own mortality.
What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. | James 4:14
Every night you and I set our alarms, assuming we’ll have the next day.
And the next.
And the next.
And the next.
Our days are limited.
Teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom. | Psalm 90:12
I once heard someone say something that stuck with me:
“If you run out of money, you can get more money. If you run out of food, you can get more food. But if you run out of time, you can’t get more time.”
I assume that little cross by the road here in Lubbock marks the spot of a fatal car accident. I don’t know the details, but I’m pretty sure that person did not expect to die that day. Maybe he/she was a mom, a grandparent, a college student, or someone else. Maybe she was on her way home after a long day’s work. Maybe he was on his way to a friend’s house. Maybe she was thinking about what to eat for dinner.
I’m saddened when I drive by that cross, thinking about the family and friends who lost a loved one so suddenly and unexpectedly. Whoever they are, I hope they are supported and coping with their loss. And I certainly hope their loved one knew the One who conquered sin and death and offers hope beyond the grave (1 Corinthians 15:20-22).
But that little cross also reminds me:
This day is a gift.
Will we squander it?
“A short life should be wisely spent. We have not enough time at our disposal to justify us in misspending a single quarter of an hour. Neither are we sure of enough life to justify us in procrastinating for a moment. If we were wise in heart we should see this.” | Charles Spurgeon
For you, today may feel like a normal Tuesday—the same ol’ routine, the same ol’ people, the same ol’ stuff.
Honestly, that’s how I feel too.
Aha but wait! No matter how ordinary it feels,
this is a day we will never live again.
So instead of wasting it, let’s treasure this day. Let’s welcome this day with gratefulness.
What a nice thought: the Lord has graciously given us a fresh batch of 24 hours.
Let’s not take them for granted.