This Vapor Called Life

Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.

James 4:14

God has seen fit to allow us to live by a calendar while we dwell here on earth, and while the old gospel song boasts “no sin in heaven,” we may add to that, with great joy, that there are no clocks or calendars as well! As I sit here on this last day of the year (at 4:19 AM) thinking about another year’s end, I thank God for the opportunity to do so. And even though this year’s end included some difficult struggles, which I will explain further down the road, life is still good and precious in God’s sight.

So, how did you do in 2015? Was it a successful year?  Did you satisfy those goals or fulfill last January’s New Year resolutions?  And how do we measure success anyway?  What exactly are we doing here? That’s a LOT of questions!

Someone once said:

Success is finding the will of God and doing it.

That’s a very simplified statement, but it holds a lot of truth.  As born-again believers, we don’t just wander through this life, or get through another day. Each day has a purpose.  Sometimes, that purpose may seem small and insignificant to the rest of the world, like holding your temper, or helping a child discover something new.  Last night, while reading to my grandson and looking at a picture of a dinosaur skeleton, he discovered that he has bones in his body.  What a joy to see that amazing discovery dawn in his eyes, and then watch him run to tell his mommy! A lot happened yesterday, but that precious moment rises to the top.

I recently finished listening to “A Christmas Home” by Greg Kinkaid, and he makes the statement that a good goal in life is to leave this earth a better place than how you found it. The creators of Precious Moments artwork set forth its mission statement “to make the world a better place by helping others share the gift of love.” Both are great mantras, but as believers we have an even stronger mandate straight from our Creator:

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

Revelation 4:11

Living to bring glory to God—what does that look like, and are we able to be successful in doing so? Always remember that God never commands us to do anything which is impossible to do without His help!  But how? I believe the WILDS Christian Camp helps its campers to accomplish that goal by quoting this verse before every meal:

Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31

When we THINK about our Heavenly Father before our feet hit the floor, and then continue to THINK about Him, realizing He is a “very present help” (Psalm 46:1), soon we will not be THINKING about Him at all—we will be LIVING under “under the shadow of the Almighty.” (Psalm 91:1) He is there, receiving glory through the life that honors Him in word and deed, action and reaction, motive and purpose. Instead of spiraling out of control, our lives slowly follow the path upward, becoming more like the Master! Sound too simplistic in a world whose catch-phrase is “It’s complicated?” Taking the “upward path” is a great way to uncomplicate life!

1138_10208704178708829_5698406446686963647_nTomorrow starts a new year.  Tomorrow also starts the second week of our newest grandson’s life: our Christmas baby! He has already given those he loves many precious moments of joy and laughter, delight and thrill.  But I’m sure there have also been pain, trying moments, difficult situations, and general frustration.  And so goes the tapestry of life! Weave well, my friend, in 2016—no matter the shade of the threads handed to you from God!

So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.

Psalm 90: 12


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