1. Life is fleeting.
2. Love others.
3. Let God have control.
I mourn with friends this week who lost a loved one—a beloved patriarch of the family. It was a sudden death that came a few days after celebrating his life.
It reminded me of the loss of my own father several years ago. There was no warning. No last-minute goodbye. He was on this earth one moment and in heaven the next. However, I wouldn't have changed a thing in how that transpired in my life.
Even though the deaths I have mentioned were sudden, both lived full lives and were men after God's heart. In His sovereignty, God made the choice of when it was time to bring them home. For that I am personally grateful.
Yes, life is fleeting. We don't always understand God's timing or God's ways. But, I do know that God is still good. He was with me through that time and will be with my friends as they walk through this, too.
I was reminded several times this week through scripture that God is love. He loved us first. And, we should love others, even though they might not love us back. Why should I expect love to be returned? It's easy to love those who love us back, but it's not so easy to love those who resist our attempts at showing care and love. Or worse, what about showing love to those who don't like us or persecute us?
I really like this quote: "God’s intent is that the people who receive His love will become the conduit of His love to others." —Julie Ackerman Link
I'm asked to be a conduit of love, not simply a receptacle. After a while, a full receptacle will get stagnant. You have to keep pouring the water out and adding fresh water or it gets nasty.
I sat back and watched God go to work this week. There were a couple of situations that came up in which I felt as if I should "do something." But, this is an area of my life in which God has been teaching me a lot. I did do something. I prayed about it first instead of trying to fix it myself. Then I waited on the Lord (because that seemed to be the right thing to do in this instance).
When I try to do things in my own strength it's a lot like pushing a boulder up a mountain. It's exhausting!
To be fair, this doesn't mean that life and problems will always be effortless if we turn to the Lord first. Scripture already tells us we will have problems, but it also tells us that the Lord help us bear these burdens.
For His glory!