Live while you live

From Charles Spurgeon’s “The Wailing of Risca”

There are infidels on earth, but there are none in heaven, and there can be none in hell. They are convinced—convinced by terrible facts—convinced that there is a God while they are crushed beneath his vengeance, and made to tremble at his eternal power. But I pray you, sirs, be not such fools as to live as though your bones were iron and your ribs were brass. Let us not be such madmen as to run as though there were no bounds to our race; let us not play away our precious days as though days were common as sands on a sea shore. That hour-glass yonder contains all the sands of your life. Do you see them running? How swiftly do they empty out! With some of you, the most of the sands are in the bottom bulb of the glass, and there are only a few to go trickling through the narrow passway of its days. Ah! and that glass shall never be turned again; it shall never run a second time for you. Let it once run out and you will die. Oh! live as though you meant to die. Live as though you knew you might die to-morrow. Think as though you might die now, and act this very hour as though I could utter the mandate of death, and summon you to pass through the portals of the tomb.

And then take care, I pray you, that you who do know Christ not only live as though you meant to die, but live while you live. Oh what a work we have to do, and how short the time to do it! Millions of men unconverted yet, and nothing but our feeble voice with which to preach the Word! My soul, shalt thou ever condemn thyself in thy dying moments for having preached too often or too earnestly? No, never. Thou mayest rebuke thy soul, but thou canst never bemoan thy excessive industry. Minister of Christ! in thy dying hour it will never be a theme of reproach to you that you preached ten times in the week, that you stood up every day to preach Christ, and that you so preached that you spent yourself, and wasted your body with weakness. No, it will be our dull sermons that will haunt us on our dying beds, our tearless preaching, our long studyings, when we might have preached better had we come away and preached without them; our huntings after popularity, by gathering together fine words, instead of coming right up, and saying to the people, “Men and women, you are dying, escape for your life and fly to Christ;” preaching to them in red-hot simple words of the wrath to come and of the love of Christ. Oh! there are some of you members of our churches, who are living, but what are you living for? Surely you are not living to get money—that is the worldling’s object. Are you living merely to please yourselves? Why that is but the beast’s delight. Oh! how few there are of the members of our churches who really live for God with all their might. Do we give to God as much as we give to our own pleasures? Do we give Christ’s service as much time as we give to many of our trifling amusements? Why, we have professional men of education, men of excellent training and ability, who when they once get into a church, feel that they could be very active anywhere else, but as Christians they have nothing to do. They can be energetic in parish vestries or in the rifle corps, but in the church they give their name, but their energies are dormant. Ah! my dear hearers, you who love the Saviour, when we shall come before Christ in heaven, if there can be a regret, it will be that we did not do more for Christ while we were here. I think as we fall down before his feet and worship him, if we could know a sorrow, it would be because we did not bring him in more jewels for his crown—did not seek more to feed the hungry, or to clothe the naked—did not give more to his cause, and did not labour more that the lost sheep of the house of Israel might be restored. Live while you live; while it is called to-day, work, for the night cometh wherein no man can work.

Oh, my brothers and sisters in Christ, if sinners will be damned, at least let them leap to hell over our bodies; and if they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees, imploring them to stay, and not madly to destroy themselves. If hell must be filled, at least let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go there unwarned and unprayed for.

The Pale Blue Dot

Last Sunday in Sunday School we watched a video.  The purpose of the video was to help us understand God’s bigness and our smallness.  The man who was speaking gave fact after fact about the size of our universe, the complexity of it all and quite frankly, most of it went way over my head.  When you tell me that something is 5.8 million light years away, I really have no concept of that number.

But then at the end of the video he showed a picture taken from the space shuttle Voyager I as it neared the edge of our solar system.  NASA sent instructions for the shuttle to turn back towards the earth and take pictures, which it did.  It took months for the images to make their way back to earth, but when they did, what they revealed was breathtaking.

I sat in stunned silence as I realized that we were not, in fact, the center of all importance.  This world that had seemed so large only moments earlier was suddenly reduced to the size of an insignificant speck – a pale blue dot.

Yet it was to this pale blue dot that the Lord of creation came.  For the insignificant inhabitants of this speck, He did the unthinkable – He joined us in our speckness.  The meaning of Philippians 2:8 “He humbled Himself” now explodes in my mind.

I feel that there are multitudes of words that want to come tumbling onto the page – yet somehow only silence seems appropriate.

The Walking Dead

The multitudes, the crowds of people
Nameless sea of humanity
Undone by sin, the walking dead
The heart of Jesus longs for these

Deceived and loving their deception
Plunging deeper into sin
They think not that the Lord is watching
They feel no need to repent

Death approaches yet they mock
No fear of God before their eyes
But judgment waits beyond this life
Before the Christ they have despised

As I look into each face
Their countenance shows forth no life
And my heart breaks, they are so lost
And yet they see no need for Christ

My heart is deeply stirred within me
I can sit no longer idly by
As precious souls that Jesus loves
Are doomed to the eternal fires

So let me be an instrument
A vessel for the Master’s use
A life surrendered to His plans
To be used as He would choose

Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.” Isaiah 6:8