Friday, February 6, 2009

Beginning to Live Like You Were Dying

So have you made the decision to “Live Like You Were Dying”? Are you ready for the abundant life? Have you made the commitment to live with a sense of urgency, eternity and priority? If you did than I’m sure that “life” has already bumped into you. Isn’t that just the way it goes? You make a decision to live a better life and something immediately is there to trip you up.

I have to think that this is a good sign. If you weren’t serious would satan waste his time trying to discourage you? He doesn’t want you to have to a breakthrough, and he is scared. Shouldn’t he be? You are about to embark on a journey that will change your life for the better. I believe relationships will be restored, and those you already have will be taken to the next level. What you have been worrying about will no longer seem important. The schedule you keep will actually mean something rather than being a nuisance. You will get busy about sharing God with others before its too late!

This journey will no doubt be different for everyone. We all, however, will share in the blessings that God has in store for us by living with the right intensity and priority. I am excited about the future even though we are talking about death. How many times can you say that you felt that way? Take a moment to really think about it. I will never be able to think of dying the same way again, and hopefully neither will you.


Robert Holland said...

My life is a testimony of the fact that satan will find anyway he can to thwart the plans, and goodness, that God has in store for you.

And I think Paul said it best: "you must always be diligent because satan prowls about seeking whom he may devour."

But like you said, we must encourage ourselves in the Lord and know that sometimes the trials we are experiencing are because God wants to take you to new heights - dreaming bigger dreams - imagining the unimaginable - but satan discovers the buttons to push that will turn our focus away from God and onto our problems.

That is who God is - God has shown himself a God of increase, abundance, and favor in my life when I've decided to change my focus away from my problems, and back to Him (God).

Living like I was dying, I believe, is ultimately living in peace, and with joy knowing who God is, and trusting, believing, and being excited about the great things God has in store for us - no matter how long we have left in life.

LVG said...

For some time now I have been committed to living a life of significance. I think carefully before I give counsel to my grandchildren or others. I really try to give them sound biblical counsel, and try to help them see things from different perspectives. I was so blessed one day when my granddaughter told me that I make her feel better about things, and always try to encourage her to do what is right. It's not easy. Sometimes I just want to agree with her and take her side, but then I wouldn't be pouring truth into her life. I am more concerned with her eternal life than her earthly life, and I want her to know that.

Recently my husband tested positive for 1st stage prostate cancer. Before he received the results, we started thinking about more eternal things. My husband talked about relationship, and how important it is to him that our relationship continues to grow and flourish. He wants to take me to Niagra Falls to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. He wants to make sure he is meeting my needs, and that I feel loved and cared for. What more could a woman ask.

We've talked about making a bucket list. One that would be at the top of my list would be a couples retreat, and next a wonderful vacation with my children and their families. I'd also like to travel to the Holy Land some day. I can't think of anywhere I'd rather go.

The advantage of living like you are dying is that you are prompted to do the things that you keep putting off to another day (that never comes). You tell someone how they make you feel, you give compliments, you tell them how much you love them and why, you strip away all those things and fears that hold you back and you just go for it.

Somethings on the list require funds that are just not available, but there are so many others that cost absolutely nothing, except for maybe comfort or pride. What is it they say "Let go and let God." Let God guide me and show me where my focus should be, and who needs my attention.

My husband is fine. He does not have to make any decisions right now about treatment, so we are thankful to have each other and our children and grandchildren. We live in hope to see them live purposeful lives. We pray that they will experience joy and find great happiness, and that we will have many opportunities to let them know just how much they are loved and appreciated.

In Christ,

Pastor Steve said...

One quick thought - the second week deals with the power of an encouraging word.....find someone today with some need and pray with can be such a blessing!
Pastor Steve

LVG said...

Speaking sweeter is not always easy, and just when you decide to do so, someone is not so sweet to you, and it hurts. The flip side of speaking sweeter is to not take offense when someone is less than sweet to you. Be sweet anyway.

My husband has been grumpy lately, and I'm sure it's due partly to his age, but mostly to all the bad stuff he's hearing on the news. Negativity breads negativity and it is a struggle to stay optimistic during troubled times. But I am committed to living a purposeful life, and this week, Speaking Sweeter.

So if someone is raining on your parade (even in your own home), speak sweet anyway. I have to believe that God is working in those who are less than sweet. May he bless them inspite of themselves.

In Christ,

Anonymous said...

Loving the unloveable is what we are called to do. My stepfather was not very loveable. He was old and cranky and wanted everything his way.

When Mama died he started counting on me to help him, even though he had two sons right there in the same town. Though I didn't want to, I committed to go by and clean house and grocery shop for him at least once a month. This was a two hour drive, and I resented the imposition. The tears would flow all the way there and back as I thought about my Mama. But I asked the lord to help me love my stepfather, to help me to really care about him. His sons didn't seem to care and I felt that everyone really deserves to have someone care about them.

Well, the Lord was faithful (as always). I was given the opportunity to witness to him, and to comfort him, because he also missed Mama so much.

He was in and out of the Hospital and intensive care the last few months of his life and finally ended up in a nursing home. I stopped by to see him one day and he asked if I had a bible he could have. As it turned out, I did have a small bible in my car. Apparently his best buddy in the nursing home was a retired pastor. My stepfather believed that he was too rotten to be forgiven, but his pastor friend finally convinced him otherwise.

He died shortly after that visit and I feel confident that he found Jesus and went home to be with him.

I'm not proud of how I initially reacted in to taking care of my stepfather, but I am so greatful that the Lord guided me through the experience and gave me the capcitiy to move beyond my immaturity and to love someone simply because he was a child of God. God loved him, and so did I in the end.

The Lord is faithful, even when I am not. I am so thankful for his grace and mercy in my life.