Have you ever received a package that had the label on the outside that said, “Fragile – handle with care?” I have had a few of them in my lifetime. When I receive it, it makes me realize that there is something valuable inside that package. I then begin to think of all the hands that have handled the package, and I wonder how differently they handled it than other packages, or if they simply ignored the label and threw it from one bin to the other until it reached me.
Today I read, “LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am” (Psalm 39:4). It made me think about now fragile and valuable this life is that God has given me. I am at that stage of life when I am considering more and more how little time I have left. I’m not planning to die any time soon, but I am approaching another birthday. Just the other day, Terry and I met with a financial advisor to review our plans for retirement, etc. He reminded me that in less than ten years, I will be able to receive Social Security benefits.
I was blown away! I don’t feel that I am that old, but my driver’s license says otherwise! The days I have lived, far out-weigh the days I have left to live. As I read this verse today, I agreed with the psalmist that I need to realize that my days are numbered, and that I need to make good use of the time God gives me. The writer also said something that touched my heart when he mentioned that he wanted God to help him to know how frail he was. That word, “frail” literally means, stopping, or rejected. We sometimes are guilty of placing far too much value on ourselves. It is good for us to realize that we are not that powerful.
I have had shots in both of my knees recently so that I can just walk without pain. I realize as I sit in the waiting room of the doctor’s office that I am becoming more and more frail each day. I cannot do the things I did when I was a younger man. My mind still thinks I can, but when I lace up the old baseball shoes and go out to field a few ground balls, I realize very quickly that things are not working as well as they did before. Knowing the frailty of my life, and that I am not Superman; causes me to want to make these days I have count for God!
I’m not ready to “hang it up,” but I want to use wisdom to maximize the time God gives me today. I don’t want to waste time with things that will not amount to anything for eternity. I want to use my time and effort to impact others for eternity while I have the time. Life is fragile!