Wednesday, 16 September 2015
The brevity of life
During the Middle Ages some monks kept a skull on their desks to remind them of their mortality and eventual death. It was a vivid reminder that life is fleeting and that they needed to keep their priorities in line. My basket of new tablet packages next to the tea pot serves the same purpose for me so I know how they feel!
Some may feel that staring at a skull..or pill packets ..is depressing, but the exact opposite is true.
The wisdom of remembering how little time we have left on this earth enables us to love and cherish others and to be grateful for every moment we are alive.
We read in Ecclesiastes Chapter 7 and verse 4 :-
"A wise person thinks a lot about death, while a fool thinks only about having a good time"
Remembering our death can motivate us to celebrate life, to make good choices and to accept God's plans and the things He allows to enter our lives.
Psalm 90 verse 12 encourages us to pray:-
"Teach us to realise the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom"
Here in the UK talking about death in any shape or form seems to be such a taboo subject and often even in terminal illness mortality, dying and death is never mentioned, so much is lost by ignoring this. Ideally we should adopt a practice of 'preparing for death' or at least acknowledging our mortality so that it guides us into filtering out what is important in our lives from what is not...life is too short, too precious to waste on things that are meaningless.
None of us knows how many days we have been given by God, so every morning when we wake treat each day as if it was to be our last and ask:-
"What will we do with the life God has given us today?"
"Our life is like the morning fog - it is here for a little while, then it is gone"