Recent/not so recent reflections

Dear Gary,

Sometimes I view something, hear something or just take a few moments to reflect. These reflections usually run rough shod over the past years of my life. Questions arise, such as “For what has my life accounted?” or, “What have I done to make my life, God’s gift to me, be productive?” or, “Gads, I’ve only a few years left to do something to help other people and so far, I’ve done very little if anything. What a waste!”

I could go one with such epithets, but, whats the use? You get the idea, nothing more need be said. And, no, I’m NOT feeling sorry for myself, quite the contrary. I take some solace in the story of David found in the middle chapters of 15t Samuel. David had been through numerous challenges which included rejection by his brothers and persecution in a new country that led to slavery. Yet, God used this as preparation for the great leader David became. God used the past in preparation for the present and future. Your past, positive or negative, is preparation for your present and future. I’m beginning to realize that each of us is on this earth having been given a mission or missions. What is yours?

To be a good parent? A good spouse? Good neighbor? Good person? As a child of God, how do you answer? And what is ‘good’? What contributions are you making? Everyone does contribute, but is that contribution positive or negative? Do you contribute to improvement in society and to the lives of others? Will God be able to say of you as you draw your last breath, “Well done good and faithful servant?” Or, will He say of you, “Where were you (in speaking of others) when I was sick? Or, in prison? Or, hungry, ill clothed, or homeless? Lonely, feeling abandoned or let down? Attacked, the victim of vicious gossip or being ignored? Where were you?

Well, these are questions I often bounce off myself. And, then I ask myself, what have I really done with the life I’ve lived? What could I have done? Now, I realize I’ve only a few short years to live. The past is done, but today is the first day of the rest of my life. I don’t need to beat myself over the head with what I’ve done or didn’t do. The REAL questions I need to ask of myself, as do you of yourself, is “What is my attitude going to be and what are the possible resulting consequences going to be with what I do or say? Is it constructive? Adding to the life of those with whom I come in contact? Those are my questions I ask of myself as I live each day. What questions do you ask of yourself? And, how will God respond? Not to how you have lived but how you ARE living from this day forward?

Randy Middleton