My daughter, her husband, their 2 Border Collies, and I wandered around the very old cemetary on a small hillside in Sierraville, California, this past weekend. We looked at the tombstones and the markers with some amount of curiosity and interest. Most of them simply had the date of birth and the date of death. The time in between those dates varied from just a few days to almost a century. It was a reminder to me that life is uncertain and precious.
I thought about Moses. I thought about his legacy. What would be the characteristics that would long be remembered and cherished by the people who had grown up under his leadership? What would Joshua, his successor, hold on to when the challenges in the new land became intense? What stories would be repeated over and over again by the next generations? What would make them laugh when they remembered him? What would bring tears to their eyes and tenderness to their hearts?
Here’s the biggest thing that has impacted my life during this study of the Book of Deuteronomy. On this journey called life we can choose to live with fear or with faith. The opportunity to make that choice comes to us every day in almost insignificant decisions. But sometimes when unexpected events, illnesses, and various crisis come, it crashes into us. At those times, as I slowly pick myself up and process my options, the temptation to let my imagination, speculation, and fear grip me is very powerful. At the same time, God gently says to me, “Keep trusting Me. I am not surprised and I will sustain you and keep you. I love you and the plans that I have for you are for good. Believe Me.” Oh Lord, my God, with all my heart, I want to live by faith in You. Thank you for sending Jesus and giving me Your Spirit to strengthen and guide me on my journey – however short or long it may be.
Watch for the Introduction to the new winter series – “HIS Name is Jesus” – a study of the Gospel of Luke, starting Friday, January 6.