Tracks In The Dust

A Father's Advice About Learning the Mission of Life

Archive for the tag “Eternity”

Who is In Control?

It’s crazy to think that you really have control over that much. We are all trying to “stay” in control though aren’t we? In control of our family, or finances, our jobs, our own personal sanity sometimes.

Life is Very Short

So we work very hard at it. To be in control. We take it very seriously, It can mean recognition, financial gain, personal satisfaction. We would pay a lot to be in-control of some things in our lives. In other ways we “wish” we were in control…”if only we ran the government, we would show everyone how it is done!” Or “if that was my child he would know what it was to behave”.

Relish the thought that someone would claim we are “out of control”. That would be a claim that would imply we had no discipline, we were ignorant of how things are done. It would put us on some list that says we don’t care, or lack caution or consideration.

But in reality to me I see that there is little we are actually in control of in the bigger picture. We are going to pass from this earth when it is our time, and we can manage to extend it but in the end we are not in control of the outcome. We are going to have things that happen that regardless of what we do in our daily lives are going to happen anyway. We can spend a ton of energy trying to be in control of things and miss the simple fact that life will go on regardless just as God planned it.

So I am giving up that control to Him. To all things there are a purpose under heaven. I know that not everyone reading this may believe, but the reality of it all is the world turns regardless of your beliefs. Take a moment to understand that your purpose here is to live for the day, and that energy and stress for control can consume you. To those who have faith, let God worry about tomorrow.

Remaining In Hope

I will admit it, over the past couple of years posting things to this blog I have addressed hope. It comes to us in many ways but in the end it just comes down to one thing. Our ability to not let things get to the point of hopelessness.

Lightbulb

 

For us Christians ( which many of you may not be) there is a simple passage that I was reminded of the other day.

Yet hope returns when I remember this one thing: The Lord’s unfailing love and mercy still continue, fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise. The Lord is all I have, and so in him I put my hope” (Lamentations 3: 21-24).

The focus is on hope. Regardless of the circumstances, It is honestly healthy to face your feelings. Share them with others and with God. So many times in the past I have held them in, tried to manage them on my own. Like a “strong” person I was showing my strength by not letting things get to me when in actuality they were.

So I am hopeful that some way God will see to it that the quality of my life with my wife, my family and friends continues to be the treasure it has been. I want to be sure that they have hope. Regardless of the time left ahead in this life, there will be more after that.

In the meantime there is no reason not to have hope. It would be a very rough road if we let hope slip away. It would be hopeless. But that cannot happen with Him. And it is my hope that it will not happen with my friends and family.

Future Regrets

We all seem to have regrets. It is so easy to look backward and see where there could have been opportunity to do one thing instead of another, to say one thing instead of another (or nothing at all). Regrets can easily build on themselves and make for a potentially miserably life buried under excuses and alternate scenarios.

The Holy Touch

There is no way to change what has already happened; but today has not already happened. So the future is ahead of us for what ever time we have. There are somethings we are not going to have a chance to avoid. They will happen as they do by the synchronicity of life I suppose. They may be very simple things that just pass by and we don’t even recognize their profound impact till much later.

“Some” of the future regrets may be avoided. I know that I have worked a mental list of those things ( perhaps writing them down). It is amazing to go through them one day to the next and see what things stick as important or significant in the future. I could surely make a bucket-list of dozens of things that I need to get done (life’s necessities)  or of things that I wish I want to get to ( desires, dreams, life milestones).

In the end it is the spiritual things that are important.  Everything else may be regrettable, it may be missed because there isnt enough time or money or simply just isn’t possible. It is more likely those things are centered around my own desires or temporary possessions or experiences that make up the time here on Earth.

There are only a very few things I need to assure I don’t miss:  it centers on my family, our children are our life. Like my wife, I  have invested all of my emotions on them because I love them, I have made decisions because of them that I wouldn’t have, had they not been there. So I struggle with the regret whether I have done my part to instill in them the simple unconditional belief in salvation.

For some of you reading this you may have already tuned-out. I am not trying to be preachy. And if you have children, ask your self that question. Ask your children: Just what do they think will happen at the end of their lives? Pray that it is centered in hope and faith.

I want them to be with me in the next life for eternity. Often  I am not sure that they get it.  Like most of the parents around me, we work to provide them access- but fall so short in injecting the atmosphere around them to make sure. Sunday schools, Bibles in hand, great moral compass get sideways because life happens. As parents we have never been the best examples in practice, but as our children are all adults now, we hope that we have provided enough direction in His name to get them to understand that Eternity Matters Most.

I regret that I have missed that in someway. Working hard to make that the only thing on my list worth worrying about.

 

Looking for the Big Finish

The AnswerYou know those movies where there is the big “reveal” – the ultimate secret that no one in the movie knew?

Lately I have been having those kind of dreams. Like some long story with a lot of mystery and conflict. Then it comes time for the answer and bam! … I wake up.

Answers like that seem to become elusive. I am sure some dream analysis person could tell me all about why I dream that way, or why I wake up before someone reveals the “big finish” to the dream.

But then for many of us life can also seem that way. Always waiting in anticipation for the revealing secret that is going to make everything fit together so well. That “ah-ha” moment. It is going to provide that release for the tension and un-sureness that life brings and let us ride off into the sunset with our heads held high.

From my perspective I guess, seems like that will be an elusive thing for all our lives if we let our subconscious keep gnawing away at our fears, chipping away at our confidence and providing fuel for the worry of not knowing where the plot will end things.

However, there seem to be chapters in life where things will come to a place where there are moments of clarity.  Loss of loved ones,  gaining new friends or lovers, celebrating the personal and emotional milestones …. things like that will jar things loose for a bit. They can make the story of living so clear  as something that has purpose or doesn’t have… but as the page turns the new plot begins and its time to continue life’s story.

To me there is only one way to settle this. It is to trust in your spiritual being. To give to Him. To make adjustments that allow you to have faith in something bigger than you. It can put a lot in perspective and allow for a different look at how the “final” end to the story will look.  It can be the ultimate “ah-ha” moment. The big finish will be the last day of your life, when all is certain ( as that day is certain to come) – you will be able to enjoy the ultimate secret.

That will be when the life/movie credits roll and the screen will show thanks to all who contributed, “The End” – or will it be the beginning?   It’s all on how you live it now I guess.

106 Billion People Since the Beginning of Time

Microscopic view of sand on the beach

Microscopic view of sand on the beach

We’re significant. We are in motion through time and we are able to influence the future right now in everything we do.

It may sometimes seem that we are like a small speck of sand on the beach.  It has been estimated that a total of 106 billion people have been born since the dawn of the human race (depending on which scientists you want to believe).

But in the process of our lives, we have an opportunity to impact each person and thing around us. Often we may not take it seriously. For some it is maybe a religious search for meaning, for others maybe it is as simple as while we are here we live as we live and then we’re done. (Not my perspective btw).

So you can just get overwhelmed by the sheer thought of it, or you can suck it up and get going. Each moment as you see someone in the street, at work or school. Whether you are meeting them for the first time or maybe the only time, you can influence their perspective on you, on life or just change the moment and send them in a new direction. You may never know you did it, but it can happen. Something you say, something you do, something in your attitude may change how they look at the day or at life itself.

But with your self-absorbed you, you can miss it. You can forget that in the core of your being you can be part of the purpose of life, part of the trigger that sends things going another direction.

Like the concept of the movie “Butterfly Effect or Ray Bradbury‘s short story”Days of Thunder” – where one little incident in the past (a butterfly dying when someone from the future kills it) can change everything about the future.   You have the same effect. Call it the YOU effect.  You can change things about the future in a chain reaction that will go on forever. It could be your part in changing the world. It doesn’t have to be some huge thing you do for “all of mankind” – it is the simple stuff you do everyday.

Don’t stop to look back now- make each day and moment count in the simplest of ways through grace and hope.

In the end, remember that Eternity Matters Most.

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