A Monday morning ‘to do’ list

listA few moments ago, while my coffee brewed, I took out a pad of notepaper labeled “To do.”  In about 30 seconds, I made a list of things that need to be done on this ‘day off’ and then I put some numbers beside each task so I would do the most important things first. It includes getting an oil change for the Jeep, making an important phone call, grocery shopping, and doing laundry (washing machine growling in background as I type).  I live on the wild side, don’t I?   (smile)

As much as we are tempted to let it all go sometimes, the best life is the result of being responsible, choosing the right priorities for the day, so I am grateful for notepads, smartphones, and calendars that help me to sort out my life into the ‘must do,’ ‘should do,’ ‘could do,’ and ‘someday I hope to do’ categories.

This first day of a new week brings one universal reminder for us all!  Peter writes “Now, don’t forget the most important thing” in chapter 3 of his second letter, he reminds us to always keep the promise of the Coming of the Lord in mind. “You must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment.” (2 Peter 3:8-10, NLT)

Let’s not be tricked by that delusion that tells us our present life is endless. Spiritual matters are easily pushed down the list of priorities, aren’t they?  But the Word assures us that God will wrap up history – perhaps in our death, perhaps by the Return of His Son in glorious power. One way or another, each of us faces a finish line and a moment of accountability. This fact is equally  awful and awesome. It is awful for those who have delayed obedience to the will of God, thinking that there will always be a tomorrow to get things in order. It is awesome for those who have looked forward and lived faithfully, responsibly with Christ and His rule a first-line priority.  At that moment, every expectation will be met, every hope fulfilled, the rich reward of the righteousness realized in full!

Many sinful decisions and regrettable acts occur when we forget that we will be held accountable. If we fail to calculate the consequences of today’s choices, we will live as fools! Wisdom is born in the realization that what we do today plants the seeds from which tomorrow grows! Peter asks, “Since everything here today might well be gone tomorrow, do you see how essential it is to live a holy life?” (2 Peter 3:11, The Message)

Remember, dear Christian that there is no need to live in terror over the brief nature of this earthly life. Jesus has prepared us an eternal home. A profound understanding of that destiny will be an empowering thought today, pushing us to live well, to leave behind the sinful, the silly, the superficial and to embrace the treasure that cannot be lost or corrupted by time’s passing. A person who knows his mortality goes deeper in the pursuit of Christ.

Why wait for a dramatic event to make better choices? Take the wisdom of the Word to heart and start to live with the end in sight, not fearfully but hopefully! “And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. And remember, the Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved.” (2 Peter 3:14-15, NLT)

Here is a word from the Word. They were penned by Paul just before his life ended in Rome.  May they be words we can say when our race is nearly over, because we have made the best choices each day because we have an eternal point of view. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.” (2 Timothy 4:7-8, NKJV)

______________

Here’s My Heart (click to listen)

Here’s my heart Lord
Here’s my heart Lord
Here’s my heart Lord
Speak what is true

‘Cause I am found I am Yours
I am loved I’m made pure
I have life I can breathe
I am healed I am free

‘Cause You are strong
You are sure
You are life You endure
You are good always true
You are light breaking through

Here’s my heart Lord
Here’s my heart Lord
Here’s my heart Lord
Speak what is true
Here’s my life Lord
Here’s my life Lord
Here’s my life Lord
Speak what is true
Speak what is true
Speak what is true

You are more than enough
You are here You are love
You are hope You are grace
You’re all I have You’re everything

Chris Tomlin | Jason Ingram | Louie Giglio © S. D. G. Publishing (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing)
sixsteps Music (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing)
Sixsteps Songs (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing) CCLI License # 810055

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