Tag Archives: mortality

“As he came from his mother’s womb, naked shall he return; to go as he came.  And he shall take nothing from his labor which he may carry away in his hand.”  (Ecclesiastes 5:15, NKJV)

Two things survive us: What we do for others; and what we do for the Lord God.

Ecclesiastes reminds us of the fact that we entered this world with empty hands, and that we shall leave it in the same way.  In the interim, much passes through our hands: Money, opportunities to lend assistance to others, occasions to bless with a written word of encouragement, the embraces of forgiveness.

What have we done this week that will survive us?

Today will offer again many opportunities “to store up for ourselves treasure in heaven, where neither moth nor rust corrupt; and where thieves do not break through and steal.” Act boldly for the sake of the kingdom (rule) of God!  – Luther

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“Lord, reveal to me the end of my life and the number of my days. Let me know how short-lived I am.  You, indeed, have made my days short in length, and my life span as nothing in Your sight. Yes, every mortal man is only a vapor. Selah.” (Psalms 39:4-5, HCSB)

It may hurt our ego to think of ourselves as vapors; a wisp of life; appearing then disappearing in the blink of an eye, but against the vast backdrop of time and human history, that is what we are.

Yet, too often we act as if we are going to inhabit the earth indefinitely.  We ignore the wisdom of the bumper sticker: “Life is short. Eternity is long.”

In today’s scripture, David asked God to remind him of the brevity of this life. Indeed, as believers in Jesus, we do have life after life. But let the reality of our small, short, life-span — and the reminder of each day’s obituaries — provoke us to be recklessly gracious to others; increasingly shrewd in our evaluation of the things that shall pass and the things that shall endure; and more obedient to our heavenly Father in all things.  – Luther

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