I am convinced that probably most of us would like to do some great thing with our lives. But we labor under the illusion that the doing of authentically great things is reserved for a chosen few: heroes, Olympians, martyrs, Saints--not really for you and me. Yet what if the greatest thing to do is just to honor God with a life that seeks to do His will in all the little things—like spending our lives in love and care? (maybe not such a small thing…) We may not climb the highest mountain, but we work to stay on the uneven path that life has marked out for us. We may not die for our faith, but we could strive to stay true to it in all we say and do during a lifetime. Here are few guidelines and reconciling questions to consider:
Did I make anyone's burdens lighter?
Did I share with those less fortunate?
Was I a good example for my children, my co-workers, my fellow parishioners, and my neighbors?
Did I invite anyone to church?
Was I kind and considerate of others—going out of my way to comfort those who need comfort?
Was I strong for my spouse when there was a need to lean on me?
Did I remember to say every day how much I love and appreciate them to my spouse and family?
Did I praise my Savior and give thanks for blessings too numerous to count?
Here’s another idea: try to imagine that the 24-hour blocks of your life are bank-fresh bundles of a hundred $1 bills. Your challenge each day is to spend your life in order to be remembered for your caring and sharing. You can't bank the money, and you can't save up for another day. You get a new handful of life currency each morning and any unspent balance evaporates before tomorrow comes.
You spend life assets when mentoring a new employee who is struggling, or listening to a friend who is upset, or volunteering to help someone catch up. You lay down your life when you are generous with your hard-earned money to help someone who has lost their job, or for supporting a family that is being drained by long-term illness, or for the many ministries of our church.
You plunk down a huge chunk of your life currency in bearing and parenting children, praying through your tears for a struggling child, and investing all the time, energy, and passion that go into molding a life for what lies ahead in this challenging world. Spend it wisely now or lose it completely!
You spend your life capital by putting your love for a fiancée or mate or child above career advancement that moves you from spiritual stability, or calls for you to spend far too much time away from people who need you more than money—or maybe calls for you to compromise some central value you have embraced. We must spend the small increments of our lives in unselfish, other-directed events that honor God by serving the people He has placed on our paths. Spend your love capital wisely, and you will be remembered by those around you. And, more importantly, remembered by Jesus—so that one day you will be in paradise.
Keep “spending wisely”—and keep singing!