There are few movies that my husband agree on watching together – westerns and old war movies. Last night we watched “Broken Trail,” with Robert Duvall. The above quote seemed to be his favorite funeral eulogy as he led a herd of 500 wild horses to market. He was accompanied by a nephew and another fellow and they met up with several folks along the way – some had to be buried, while others were living under slavery. The movie started with the sex slavery in China in the late 1800s – with girls being sold into prostitution for the men of the old west. I was about ready to change it to something else, but I do like Robert Duvall and he usually has a good message within his movies. So we continued to watch. It turned out to be a beautiful saga, with magnficent scenery and interesting twists and turns.
King Solomon and many other notables, have spoken about our travel through life as being a time for everything in this world – a time to be born – a time to die. What about all the years in between?
How about the time you experience your first kiss, or get dumped by the one who kissed you? How about going through childbirth and realizing that the pain was nothing compared to what happens next? What about the days you felt alone and had no one to talk to? How about the dumb decisions you made that led you away from the truth? We all go through different seasons, in different ways, with many different solutions or results. Which season are you currently in?
When you’re a toddler, your mind is that of an explorer – one who wants to know about everything – where it comes from, what it tastes like, what you can do with it, how you can benefit from it. Especially how it can benefit you.
As a teen you continue to learn, but now you know everything – or at least you think you do. You challenge every adult in your path, you spread your wings, you try to be independent, but you realize you still need a roof over your head. Again, how will it benefit you personally.
When you reach young adulthood, we’re in transition from knowing it all to realizing we don’t know nearly enough and that 4 year college degree won’t cut it so you continue the never ending pursuit of knowledge. You may find the love of your life at this time and continue to wonder how life is going to benefit you, so you get married and have a family.
At this point in the seasons of life, you realize (or should) that it no longer is about you. You are now the one who is supposed to be responsible for other lives. Some succeed while others fail miserably, but life goes on.
In middle age, the youngsters are now in their teens and don’t need you anymore, because they know everything, so you begin to refocus on yourself. This is the time of the mid-life crisis, career changes, divorce, re-identifying yourself. Once more it’s all about you.
As you near retirement, you look forward to days in the sun, travel to exotic places, being waited on and cared for more than any time in your life. Guess what? It isn’t all about you then either. Now your time is spent sitting in waiting rooms, visiting specialists,having every possible test done to determine how to make you last longer. You may work out at the gym twice as hard with half the results. Your digestive system can’t tolerate Big Macs anymore. Your days grow shorter and you spend more time in sleep. Isn’t it funny how we start out sleeping more than we’re awake and wind up in the same condition?
Finally that last season arrives. It’s one no one wants to face. It’s that final step that takes you into the unknown, but if you’ve grown to know your Savior over those earlier seasons, you know something better awaits you on the other side.
Every season has its pluses and minuses, but I think God intends for us to experience each one with gusto. For example, in my current season, I now have more time to spend with those nearing death – to comfort and support them. I can do some meaningless chore for them which they can no longer do. I can spend quality time with my grandchildren and adult children. I can pursue some of the interests I never had time for before. I can continue to live until God calls me home.
So is life really meaningless? I don’t think so. I think it’s a time devoted to getting us ready for that last season – Heaven!