Back To School

Right now many parents are rejoicing over the fact summer has come to an end and their kids are heading back to school. Some might even do an Irish jig as they watch the school bus pulling away from their house. They are delighted while Im a wreck. Now, dont confuse my reaction for me being the ultra parent who loves to spend every waking moment with their children. I love my kids, but time apart can be a good thing for both parties.

The reason why I dread the upcoming school year can be summed up in three words: brand new wardrobes. Thinking of the hit on my wallet makes me cringe. This has nothing to do with being consumed with name brand labels or designer clothes. We are bargain shoppers who head straight to the sale rack. Sadly, thanks to a summer growth spurt, our oldest daughter, Madison, literally has no clothes that fit her. Jeans we used to roll up suddenly look like Capri pants or that an impending flood is coming. Baggy tops now show her mid-drift. The only bright side is her younger sisters closet just exploded with possibilities.

My wife and I sat baffled as we helped Madison try on her old clothes. We both understood the basics of biology and realized eventually our children would mature. But, someone please tell mewhen did our baby girl grow up? When did she sprout up like a tree? How did we not notice this?

The Psalmist says our life is but a breath (Psalm 39:5 and 144:4). Other parts of scripture compare the days we have on earth to a shadow (Psalm 102:11 and Job 8:9) or grass that is here one day and gone the next (1 Peter 1:24 and Psalm 37:2). Coming to grips with the brevity of life should cause two different reactions to erupt within us: reflection and action.

In the immortal words of Ferris Bueller, Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. We have been there every step of the way with Madison, but its easy to get wrapped up in the moment of the here and now and miss the growth that has taken place along the way. The same principle holds true with our spiritual transformation.

You might look at yourself right now and be confronted with struggles, frustrations and shortcomings. Letting this be your only perspective will inevitably lead to frustration. So, rewind the tape to a few months ago. Where were you back then? Chances are good youve grown, yet if you dont stop and reflect, youll never have the opportunity to celebrate transformation and Gods faithfulness.

But, we cant stop there. We cant sit back and be satisfied reveling in the past. Life is short and we only possess a small window to leave an eternal mark. Without an understanding that our days are like a breath, it is easy to just sigh and put off sharing our faith, forgiving someone who hurt us or putting our One Word into action for another day. The reality is tomorrow has never been promised to us. Each day is a gift and the question we must ask ourselves is what are we doing with the moments weve been given?

  • Coming to grips with the brevity of life should cause two different reactions to erupt within us: reflection and action.  Reflect on the steps youve taken throughout the My One Word process. Which step toward growth reminds you that change is indeed possible?

  • Without an understanding that our days are like a breath, it is easy to just sigh and put off things for another day. In terms of your walk with God and influencing others, what is one thing you have put off that you know you need to act upon? What is causing you to hesitate from putting your faith into action?

Are you looking for a way to keep your word in front of you all year long? Register for a My One Word account! One of the key features of a MOW account is an online Word Journal that allows you to capture your thoughts to reflective questions like you see above. You can go back at any time to read your completed journals to see how God has been moving in your life through your word in 2011.  If you already have an account, the questions from this blog have been posted to your Word Journal log in to your account to start your Word Journal today!

  • This was amazing. This is exactly what I’ve been trying to show with my life and my blog, and to help people around me realize.

    Life is short. Do what matters.

    I’d like to link my blog back to this, or even have a button on the side of my blog so any readers can find you easily– is there an image you could send and then I can create a button for it with a hyperlink? Feel free to email me.

    This blog has helped me keep focused (my one word) through a very trying year– thank you.