A Mere Phantom

Psalm 39:4-7 “Show me, O Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. 5 You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man’s life is but a breath. 6 Man is a mere phantom as he goes to and fro: He bustles about, but only in vain; he heaps up wealth, not knowing who will get it.
7 But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.”

So many Christian’s walks this earth as though they are going to be here forever. This is their home, this is where they will always dwell, this is their heaven. They are trying to gather as much as fast as they can. They want it all! They have no qualms about going into debt to get the things this world tells them they need.

We see all the goody’s that the world hangs out and we have this desire to have them all. It is the “I want” syndrome. And the worst part is many of them have forgotten how to be kind, thoughtful and generous. Not all, mind you, but many.

I happened to see a post on an Instagram a couple weeks ago where someone had taken a picture of some random person’s home as they went by. They were criticizing the look of the home, how it was not as neat and tidy as it should be. Clearly, this was a very modest home and the people who lived there were not rich, and maybe had not been taught to keep their home in the best of conditions, or maybe they just did not have the means to do so. I would venture to say they were doing what they perceived to be their best. They had several things piled up near their home at the end of their driveway, more than likely because they did not have an outside shed to put them in, so they made the best of it.

Obviously, neither I or this person posting can know for sure, but the comments that were posted for all to see were not kind and they were saying how angry it made them seeing such. My heart hurt for the person’s living in the home, not for the well to do person posting it. I know this person and know that they live very well. I like the person that posted, it is not that, it is their total lack of concern for the possibility that maybe, just maybe these people were doing their best and posting their home for their audience was not very kind. Where was their compassion when they were judging this person?

This is just a small instance where I have seen people who have climbed the ladder of success, “by the grace of God,” who have more and get to experience life in a more carefree way passing judgment on those that they see as “less than.” The world is not made up of all wealthy people. Not everyone gets to get a great job with the big money. Some just barely make it through, not because they are lazy, but they just never get ahead for whatever reasons, and some choose to live simply because they realize this is not our permanent home they are just passing through. And by living smaller they can be more generous with their money and their time.

As we just read in scripture, our lives are like a mere Phantom. We are just a dot on the landscape of life, here one day and gone another. We are not promised tomorrow; so we need to live today like it was our last. We need to be purposeful in our love toward others. We need to give and love as Jesus did, not counting the cost, not looking back, but always looking forward to that day; what day you ask? It is the day we leave this earth either through death or is coming, but either way, gone we are, in a moment. Those who loved us much will remember us, but for the world, not so much, we are gone and they don’t care.

That job you love so much will be given to another before you know it and although you worked long and hard, this new person will take over and it will be as though you never were. We think way too much of ourselves and our importance on this earth.

I say live it well. Live with intentionality. Live with overflowing love and kindness to all people. Give generously without fear of not having. Trust God more and this world less. Keep your word. Love your neighbor as yourself. Look at your own faults and surrender them to Christ first, before you judge others. Give mercy and grace to all just as you have received it. Look for His coming more than you look to fill your bank account. Live with less and do more. Love, love, love, love, love… Just like Jesus did!

And when you die, “and you will,” or if he returns you are not so weighted down with stuff that someone else has to clean up after you when you are gone. Walk softly peeps…love God and remember who you’re not, and whose you are!