Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Remembrance of the Passing of Time

"I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread." Psalm 37:25

While shopping for groceries today, I recognized a familiar face. I couldn't recall just where I saw her before. I thought for a little bit and then realized, it was the face of a woman who cashiered at our local Foodland,gone for at least 15 years now. I thought I might say something to her, but then thought better of it, thinking she would think I was crazy if I told her I remembered her from there. But on the next aisle, she told me that my face looked familiar. And so we had a pleasant chat. She still wore the same hairstyle, only time had worn her face, and I am sure mine looked aged to her as well.

When I shopped there, it was a totally different stage of my life: the stage of being a young mother with three hungry mouths to feed. There was healthy competition in our shopping district because we had two grocery stores separated by a discount store in between. I hunted out the bargains in each place for the best value for my growing family. The woman always worked hard at the store, I remembered asking her for rainchecks on items that sold out. She always wore a pleasant smile. Now, that store has twice been replaced, and soon will be vacant once again. Nothing comes to stay.

"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven." Ecclesiastes 3:1

Time... you see people and then you don't see them. We are mere shadows walking the face of this planet. I am ashamed to say I used to get inwardly annoyed with a man who took forever to get across the street with his cane. He and his wife always walked about the neighborhood together. Now, I only see her.

Surely every man walks about like a shadow;
Surely they busy themselves in vain;
He heaps up riches,
And does not know who will gather them. Psalm 39: 6

My father mowed a graveyard as a young man, way out in the middle of an Iowa cornfield, a version of a known epitapah appeared on one of the graves. As a young girl, I went down to visit that graveyard, entranced by the message on the old gravestone. My father, now an old man, can still recite the verse on the stone:

Remember this, as you pass by
As you are now, so once was I
As I am now, so you will be
Prepare for death and follow me.

Sobering thought for a child but now it has great impact as the years fly by. I "am" now, but my days are fleeting upon this earth. I need not get caught up in the cares and anxieties of this life, for it is just a fleeing shadow, real life begins where God is, not here on this planet. Although, right now, I have His eternal life by His grace through faith. (Ephesians 2:8-9)

As I face perplexing trials, I need not worry about tomorrow. I do not know where I will be tomorrow, but I can trust that my Father above will always be faithful no matter what I am going through.

"Behold, blessed is the one who God reproves; therefore despise not the the discipline of the Almighty, For He wounds, but He binds up; He shatters, but His hands heal. He will deliver you from six troubles; in seven no evil shall touch you. In famine He will redeem you from death, and in war from the power of the sword. You shall be hidden from the scourge of the tongue, and shall not fear destruction when it comes." Job 5:17-20

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