I was recently moved by a chapter of a book I am reading, Crazy Love by Frances Chan. The second chapter in the book is called You Might Not Finish This Chapter. A rather short chapter, but the idea it delivers is deafening to me. Chan basically wants us to realize the gravity in life that we all act like doesn't exist.
We all know that life is short. James 4:13-14 tells us that life is a vapor. But I can't help acknowledging the fact that I don't act like every single day could very well be the last day I spend dying on this earth. This could be the very day that I see my Creator face to face. This could be the day that you see Him. Even more sobering, I can't help but weep over the countless unsaved lives that are walking this earth. and this could be their last day, they could die today and never know the everlasting warmth of our Heavenly Father. They could step out of this world and into an eternity totally apart from God. It's my job - it's our jobs as followers of Christ to see that this doesn't happen. It doesn't have to.
Even still, within that same idea, we don't always live like God tells us to in His word. He commands us to redeem our time for His Glory, because the days are evil. They are evil and too short to be taken for granted. Ephesians 5:15-15 says "be careful then how you live, not as the unwise do. Make the most of every opportunity, for the days you live in are evil." This verse needs to be the face of our wristwatch. Everytime we look at what time it is - we will be alarmed of the fact that precious time and opportunities are slipping through our hands. We don't have long. We must act now. This is not a matter of convenience. We have here and now to live for the LORD. All we have is this moment.
You can't help but feel the challenge of carpe diem oozing from society. But what is it exactly that they (society) wants us to seize from this day? They don't even know. Society wants us to live for OURSELVES. The world wants us to get the most out of every moment to better ourselves, our own life, our own. I have to continuosly remind myself is that my time, talent and treasure are not mine to be greedy with!
Seizing the day is hardly concomitant with the Christian walk to the world. I found an interesting article about atheism and carpe diem going hand in hand. Once again proof of a world / society that wants us to live for ourselves. This echos the evil craftiness of the enemy. God doesn't need craftiness to figure out what to tell us to do with our time. He created the time. It's His time to guid us through.
The world wants us to think of God as come control freak that wants to take up our time and get in the way. If you have ever been desparate for God's intervention in your life - that might make you laugh.
I want to look more closely at different points in the Word where carpe diem is better defined for my life. I want to seize the day - but I cannot risk my valuable time devoted to seeking what the world wants me to do with my time.
The first theme of acting swiftly for the work of God that came to mind is Noah. Most people just know that he builds the Ark...the flood...two of each animal...blah blah blah. But if you look a little closer there is a significant couple of verses that establishes Noah's active quest in serving a God in whom he has found favor. Genesis 6:8 - "Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD" (this means that he had devoted his life to serving God and this leads to God acting in our lives.)
Genesis 6:18 - "But I will establish my covenant with you..." (this means that God wanted to build a bond - a promise, that would stand for somethine. God wanted to use Noah and his family to regenerate the human population. That is serious trust. Earned by living every day for God.)
Genesis 7:5 "And Noah did all that the LORD had commanded him" (this is the most miraculous statement in this story...no not even the fact that God covered the entire planet with water...Noah obeyed God.
This may one of those tucked away Bible stories that we have all heard of at some point, but herein lies a hidden message. God is ALWAYS in action. As Henry Blackaby says, we should find out where God is working and JOIN him! Often I think, "ok, here I am God...I'm trying to get ____ (insert task/mission here) accomplished and it seems like you're MIA!!! Whenever you get a small moment of your enormous time...do you think JUST MAYBE you might be able to help a daughter out!? Sheeesh!"
C'mon, like you have never gotten impatient with Him....
The secret message in the flood story is that Noah followed God into action. No questions asked. He lived according to God's word the best he could and GOD called on Him. God chose to work through our bearded friend.
Oh, how I desire to be used as well. Today. Because today is the only day that I know for certain I will have left to join God where He is working. This moment. Because this very second is a breath wasted if it's not for the Glory of God.