Daily Devotional for Friday May 23, 2003

Life is a one-time shot!

(James 4:14)

Life is a one-time shot! So often, we get bogged down in the day to day activities of life, we lose sight not only of its brevity, but the fact that life is a one-time shot. I hate to break the bad news to Shirley MacLaine and others who buy into the non-biblical concept of reincarnation, but we are created in the image of God for this one and only journey called life. When it is over, we will have an eternal home, either with our Creator if we come to know His Son, Jesus Christ by faith, or eternally separated from our Creator if we reject Christ. The point I want to drive home today is that this is it. This is our life. This is not a dress rehearsal, there are no do-overs, we need to make the most of this time that God gives us.

It is human nature not to think much about death, our own mortality. We tend to dwell on it more as we get older, since it becomes closer to a reality. As we go through life, we see our grandparents die, our parents, other family members, friends, and those we know pass away. At those times, we are reminded that we too will one day die, though we try not to think about it very long.

In addition to being reminded at times how brief this life is, we often pause to see where we are in life, look back to where we have been, and look ahead to where we want to go. Again, as we get older, we become aware that this time on earth, this life, really does pass quickly. Can you believe the year 2003 is almost half over???? It is at these times of reflection when it becomes apparent how much of our life we squander and don't take advantage of. Remember this, today is a day like none other, and when it is gone, it is never coming back.

I want you to take 15-20 minutes today, get alone by yourself, take a pad of paper, and write down the things you are happy about in your life today, and the things you are not happy about. For this exercise, we are not going to even deal with the past, since it is past. It is behind you. You can't go back and relive the past, so let's focus on what you can change. That is today and tomorrow.

Now, list the things you want to do in the next week, month, 6 months, and year. Write it down. I want you to not only write it, but see the words, and reflect on them. You see my friend, you are never going to be able to maximize your life, take full advantage of it, unless you have goals set and a plan to achieve those goals. Life is far too precious to waste, to let slip through our fingers like sand flows through an hour glass. We must take each day and live life to its fullest.

Of course for this to make sense, for it to become a reality, your life must be looked at in context of what God wants from your life. We must live each day with the prayer on our lips, "not my will, but thy will". God promised a life of peace, of joy, of ABUNDANCE. When you read in the Bible about some of the great men and women, those who followed the Lord had full, abundant lives. You see, we must never forget that our ultimate purpose in life is to serve and glorify Him. To accomplish that,we must be out there, living life, making the most of each day, in a position where God can really use our lives to make a difference. The only way your life will ever really make a difference, is when you are yielded to Him, allowing Him to use you to share the message of hope and love through Christ.

I love you and care about you so much. I want to challenge you today. Take the time needed to reflect on your life today. Take the time to see where you are at, and where you want to go. Look at those things in your life each day that are positive, and those that are negative. The fact is, life is short. Only God knows when our time here is over. We have no control over that. What we DO have control over is how we use each day.

I don't care where you live, what ethnic background you are, what your social or financial status is, the one thing all of us have in common is 24 hours. Nobody gets a second more or a second less. How we use that 24 hours becomes the key decisions we must make each day. God has a perfect plan and purpose for your life. Allowing that plan and purpose to unfold each day is the challenge we all face. Life is a one time shot. We won't get another chance. My prayer today is that you make the most of each and every day God gives you. It is your life, the only one you will get, so make the most of it!!!

In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ, Bill Keller