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Borrowed Time

I am living on borrowed time.

It’s a truth I don’t often think about, and which hit me as I fought my way home from an unexpectedly long shift in a terrible mood. Have you ever gotten off a 12 hour overnight, only to find you are somehow scheduled to work several hours more and didn’t know it? It didn’t make me feel very good about life. The ol’ workplace, I can vaguely tell you, has recently transformed from something great into a locus of chaos and nearly constant stress that threatens all the time to take over the days I do have with my family. Have you ever felt like the entire world was conniving to keep you from getting home after work? Swollen traffic, multiple clogged lanes of construction, a tractor going 15mph on a one-lane highway in front of me… It took a full hour to get home today – more than twice the time it usually does. And I can think of other things to whine about, and definitely did whine about them as I fought my way home. 

But the thing is, at one point a single thought made that whining seem impotent and just plain stupid. The radio played “How Deep the Father’s Love for Us” and my frustrations lost their edge. How Deep the Father’s Love…for me! No matter how many million frustrations are keeping me awake, the God of all the universe loves me. After that, what do I really have to complain about? “It was my sin that nailed him there…” I should have been dead long ago. Even more, by rights, I should scream eternally in hell.

But Christ took my sin, in an astonishing act once and for real in the past. And what really strikes me is the truth that every moment I live to breathe out grumblings about my day is a moment I shouldn’t have had in the first place. It’s borrowed time. I don’t deserve it. And that makes me want to be thankful for every breath instead of irritated. I really am like the man brought back to life from the brink by CPR: shouldn’t an experience like that change my perspective on all of life?

So thank you, Gracious God, for your superabundant goodness to me, in ten million ways that far outnumber those million frustrations that are keeping me awake! Knowing your goodness, meditating on the life I have only by your good pleasure, is restorative. Your kindness can’t help but bring me joy overflowing, even in the darkest of circumstance, when I really make myself think about it with even a minute about of sound reason. I am blessed to be alive right now – and that just makes all my whining feel petty.

You, oh God my God, are too good to me!

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