Your life and my life are short. Even if you live to be over 100 years old, your life is still short compared to eternity. Those who live to be old often look back over their life and realize how quickly it has passed. Isaiah 40:6-8 “The voice said, ‘Cry out!’ And he said, ‘What shall I cry?’ ‘All flesh is grass, and all its loveliness is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades, because the breath of the Lord blows upon it; surely the people are grass. The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.’” Surely human life is like the existence of grass. When the rain comes and the temperatures are warm, the grass quickly grows; we enjoy it while it is green and produces a pretty flower. But soon the season passes, the rain stops, the flower fades, the grass turns brown, and it is soon gone. That is like our life. James put it another way. James 4:14 “Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” The steam rising from a hot cup of coffee on a cold day quickly vanishes. Even so, our lives here on earth are quickly over like the vapor. The psalmist wrote in Psalms 39:4-6 “Lord, make me to know my end, and what is the measure of my days, that I may know how frail I am. Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths, and my age is as nothing before You; certainly every man at his best state is but vapor. Surely every man walks about like a shadow; surely they busy themselves in vain; he heaps up riches, and does not know who will gather them.”
Since life is short, how should you act? First, don’t give in to temptation, but deny yourself. You may be tempted to enjoy the pleasures of sin, but they only last for a short period of time and then the pleasure is gone. Be like Moses. Hebrews 11:24-26 “By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.” Cast off the works of darkness. Romans 13:11-14 “And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.” Life is short – deny yourself.
Don’t be afraid to suffer or die for Christ. Many of the early Christians walked boldly to their execution because they realized that life is short and eternity awaits. The apostle Paul wasn’t’ afraid. Acts 20:22-24 “And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” Life is short – don’t be afraid to suffer and die for Christ.
Use your time wisely in your service to God. Ephesians 5:15-17 “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” Galatians 6:9-10 “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” Life is short – be busy in the service of God.
Be Patient in Trials. Whatever trials you suffer, they are only for a moment in this short life. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” Whatever pain your trials give you, you can endure them because they are just for a moment. Life is short – be patient in trials.
Prepare for eternity. 2 Peter 1:5-11 “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. ” Life is short – make your calling and election sure.
Deny yourself and don’t give in to temptation. Don’t be afraid to suffer or die for Christ. Be busy in the service of God. Be patient in trials. Prepare for eternity. Life is short.