“Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.”
Your life can change in an instant.
When that happens, it’s easy to start playing the “I wish I had…” game.
In June 2002, my son left for a mission trip and I started to paint his room. About an hour into the project, my mom called. “Something’s happened,” she said. “I need you right away.”
I jumped in the car and speed to her house about 15 minutes away. When I arrived, I saw police cars, a fire truck, and an ambulance. Neighbors were standing around the yard, my mom was distraut and wandering about aimlessly, and was lying on the grass, surrounded by paramedics.
My dad had had a massive heart attack while mowing the lawn, and one of the neighbors discovered him lying on the ground.
Losing my dad that day was a terrible shock, and my life changed in an instant. During the next few weeks I kept thinking… I wish I had called my dad that morning to tell him that I loved him, I wish I had visited him that weekend, I wish I had offered to mow the grass, etc. I played the “I wish I had” game.
In Luke 21, Jesus talks to his disciples about the end times. He tells them about the events that will happen before the Son of Man returns – wars, earthquakes, famine, heavenly bodies being shaken, etc. Then in verse 36, Jesus gives the disciples these instructions:
“Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.” – Luke 21:36
Since we (like the disciples) don’t know the day when Jesus will return – it is easy to put off doing what we should do today. Life gets busy, and our faith is not always the priority. We don’t feel an urgent need to do what God wants us to do. We think that we can do it next week, or next month.
But take it from me – life can change in an instant, and we may never get to do or say the things we should have done.
This week, don’t put off telling someone that you are sorry or telling a family member that you love them. Don’t wait to share your faith, help someone in need or forgive a friend. Focus on keeping alert and faithful so you won’t have to play the “I wish I had” game. What does God want you to do today?
Carie Bashur has been the Financial Administrator at the Journey for 7 years. She also oversees the women’s ministry and is leading a women’s growth group this fall.