Much Closer Than We Think

By: Justin Morton

This week I have been reminded of the brevity of life. Sadly, on Monday morning I read of the passing of a fellow minister who died as the result of a car accident; he was 60 years old. Then on Monday evening, a young and seemingly healthy college student passed away unexpectedly at the young age of 18. On Wednesday afternoon, I attended a funeral for a 79 year old Christian man. My heart breaks for these families and many others who are grieving such losses.

We all know death is an appointment we must keep (Heb. 9:27), we just do not always think that appointment could come at any moment in our lives. Very few people who meet their appointment with death know when that time is coming. Sure, the doctors sometimes can give us a general time frame based on our current health situation, but more often death comes to people when they least expect it.

During times like this week, I am mindful of David’s prayer when he said, “O LORD, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am! Behold, you have made my days a few handbreadths, and my lifetime is as nothing before you. Surely all mankind stands as a mere breath! Surely a man goes about as a shadow! Surely for nothing they are in turmoil; man heaps up wealth and does not know who will gather! ” (Psa. 39:4).

David understood that his days were numbered, and the same is true for all of us. No matter how long we may be blessed to live on this earth, our days are but a mere breath. James, the half-brother of Jesus, would say, “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes” (Jam. 4:14).

Each one of us only has so many days left on this earth. And since we do not know when our appointment with death will come, we need to make sure we are fully prepared. Have you responded to God’s call to surrender your life to Him (Lk. 9:23)? Have you been buried with Christ in baptism (Rom. 6:3-4)? Are you living a faithful life following after Him (Rev 2:10)? I hope we are because our appointment may be much closer than we think.