Monday, August 2, 2010

Morning thoughts

I take a morning jog several times a week. My usual route takes me through the city cemetery.

this is my favorite tombstone, it makes me laugh

I sometimes find myself wondering about the people buried there ~ what were their lives like? Were they pleased with the choices they had made, with the man or woman they had become?

Life events occasionally force us to face our own mortality. The death of a loved one, a serious accident or illness, or even just the passing of another birthday or anniversary. The end of our mortal lives will come someday, we will have become the person that we have created through our choices.

I love the Old Testament; I love the symbolism of Christ that is everywhere in this ancient record. I recently read about the tabernacle that Moses was commanded to prepare and carry with the children of Israel through the wilderness that God might dwell among his people. I also read about the various sacrifices that the Lord commanded them to offer, to point their minds forward to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and their total dependence on him for redemption. I have found scriptural heroes like Moses, Abraham, Esther, and Noah. They loom large in my imagination, bigger than life, yet they were just ordinary people like us, asked to do extraordinary things in extraordinary times.

I found a statement in an OT commentary in the introduction to Numbers 13-16. It says: “The Old Testament has some stories of great and marvelous men and women..who provide inspiration to all who desire to achieve true greatness. But the Old Testament also records many tragedies. The tragedy was not so much in what happened, but in what was lost, in what could have been, compared to what was.” Old Testament Student Manual, Genesis - 2 Samuel, Religion 301, 205.

These two ideas merged in my mind this morning on my way through the cemetery. When I die, will I have become the woman that God intends me to be? Will my life be a triumph or a tragedy? I know that my Savior Jesus Christ has paid the price for my sins, rebellions, misjudgments, and carelessness. I know that as I repent I am made pure and clean through his blood, and that he is able to affect changes in me that can make me a pure and sanctified person. But, he waits for me to choose to accept his offering and let it be effective my life; I must decide if I will follow him, live as he asks, obey his commandments, and yield my will to his that I may become holy through his love. His is the power and ability, the choice must be mine.