Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“You take over. I’m about to die, my life an offering on God’s altar. This is the only race worth running. I’ve run hard right to the finish, believed all the way. All that’s left now is the shouting—God’s applause!”
2 Timothy 4: 6-8 (The Message)
Our elder granddaughter, Hannah, must have been disappointed that time a few years ago when we didn’t attend her piano recital.
She and Ellie Kate, our younger granddaughter, knew that her Mimi and Gran always tried to come to everything they were involved in. The problem was we didn’t know about her recital. Yet, even if she had known that we didn’t know of her recital, we ached for the unnecessary disappointment she must have felt as she waited her turn to perform—and couldn’t see us there. I was crushed.
We’re running out of moments, my friends.
That’s the underlying theme in those words spoken by the Apostle Paul to the younger Timothy. Paul knew he was running out of time—in prison in Rome while the evil emperor Nero planned his execution. With death impending, Paul was making certain—once again—that Timothy understood what was really important in life.
We’re running out of time, dear friends.
It’s why many of my Saturday mornings years ago—when our children and grandchildren lived in Tampa—were devoted to a round-trip drive to Tampa to watch our two granddaughters play softball. That’s it—and then back home to Gainesville. They knew I was there with their Mommy and Daddy—but more than that—I knew I was there.
And that one particular Saturday would have never happened if I had stayed home.
The game for our younger granddaughter, Ellie Kate, was the first one that morning. I had just fist-bumped Ellie during her game and while she was standing on first base after a clean base hit. I always wonder why other Granddads don’t go out to do that—if they’re there at all. I suppose they think it’s silly, and so they rationalize it away by convincing themselves that they would get in the way. In a game of four-year olds! I don’t think so! Perhaps wisdom will come as maturity grows—and before sadness sets in with the realization that those moments for impromptu fist-bumps will never come again.
Anyway, three outs later, her team was on defense and she was playing second-base—with her own style and flair—by standing directly on top of second base. I whistled to her.
Both Ellie Kate and Hannah know my whistle. Ellie looked my way and began to wrap her arms around herself while she was saying something I couldn’t quite make out. The next time she yelled it a bit louder across the ball field as she continued to wrap her arms around herself—“Gran, I love you!” I returned the blessing with my own display of hugs with the words “Ellie, I love you too!” She smiled her warm—“I know”—smile back, and then held up the universal “I love you” hand signal—thumb, index and little finger raised high. I returned that blessing too.
Later, when kissing the girls good-bye, after holding Ellie while we watched Hannah play her game, I also got to kiss Hannah’s original and long-time doll “Marjorie” she had at the game with her. Wouldn’t have missed it.
We’re running out of chances, folks.
So, what? So what do we do, or do differently?
Well start here—no guilt for missing past moments. Instead, consider this—what haven’t you done that you should have done? Do it the next time you get the chance. What haven’t you done that you have always wanted to do? Do it now. What haven’t you read that you should have read, and wanted to, years ago? Read it. What haven’t you seen that you’ve always wanted to see? See it.
We’re running out of years, my dear friends.
So, who? Who haven’t you called that you should have called? Call them. Who haven’t you taken to lunch that you should have—long ago? Take them. Whose lives have you left unblessed? Bless them. Who haven’t you shared the eternal love of God with? Share it—it will make an eternal difference in their life, and yours.
We’re running out of opportunities, my friend.
So, why not make sure you have no more?
Why not make sure for today and all your tomorrows?
In His Name—Scott
Copyright 2016. Scott L. Whitaker. All rights reserved.