Today we move into the third principle of One Month to Live--"Learn Humbly." Part of learning humbly is learning about ourselves--about our identity--about who we really are.
Last December, on a very cold night, my daughter Mary and I drove to an overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The sky was completely clear. There was no moon. It was midnight, and it was freezing cold.
We got out of the car and walked to the edge of the overlook. The surrounding mountains were black silhouettes against the star-studded sky. The stars were clearer and brighter than I had ever seen them.We could see the Milky Way arching across the sky. And then the meteors. One by one they flashed across the sky. It was amazing.
Centuries ago, a shepherd boy named David must have had a similar experience. Sitting outside in the fields, keeping watch over his flocks by night, David would have been able to look up and see the stars even more clearly than I did in December. Looking up at that vast array with its countless points of light probably made David feel pretty small. Perhaps it was after one of those nights that he wrote:
When I consider your heavens,So what is mankind? Who are we, really?
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them? (Psalm 8:3-4)
The answer is found in today's Scripture. We are God's handiwork. The original Greek word for handiwork can actually be translated "masterpiece."
You are a masterpiece.
The same God who created the stars created you. And just as the stars have a purpose, so do you. You were "created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for [you] to do."
You are a masterpiece, created for a purpose.
Take a moment and let that thought sink in. And don't get stressed about wondering what your purpose is and what you're supposed to be doing and all of that. For now, just rejoice in the fact that your basic identity--who you really are--is something amazing.
Make a list of your strengths--everything you can think of. Thank God for creating you with these positive characteristics and abilities. Then ask yourself: If I only had One Month to Live which of these would I want to be sure I put to use in the time I have left?