The Dash of Life
September 15, 2014
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I debated about using the accompanying photo for a photovotional. I know, it’s rather morbid. It represents the grief of a specific family in 1895 when they lost their child in the same year the child was born, perhaps even at birth. I promise a positive application, so hang in there with me!
I was attracted to photographing this tombstone because it reminded me of the brevity of life. Yes, this is an extreme example but even the longest of human lives is short by comparison to the passing of the ages, and even more so when you contemplate eternity. I can’t tell you the number of older folks who tell me how quickly life has gone by for them. Part of what prompts us to pause and gaze at a beautiful cut flower or a magnificent sunset is the brevity of what we’re viewing. We know it will soon pass, so we take advantage of the opportunity while we have it.
Linda Ellis wrote a poem called “The Dash” in which she describes the importance of the dash that separates our birth date from our death date. It’s a copyrighted poem and so I can’t quote it, but you can go to Linda’s web site and read it there. What I can say is that she raises the issue of how we spend our dash.
As a follower of Jesus I know I have forever to carry out His eternal purposes, but I also know that I’m given a unique and limited time during my journey here on earth to do what can only be done here and now. I don’t have all the time in the world because my time in this world is limited. Considering God’s grand plan and sovereign will I take comfort in the fact that there’s enough time, though not unlimited time, to do His will on earth as it is done in heaven.
“The life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more. But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him…” (Psalm 103:15-17a)
“As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.” (Jesus in John 9:4)