We'd listen to the radio play all night
Didn't want to go home to another fight
Through all the hard times in my life
Those nights kept me alive

I’ve been day dreaming a lot lately, looking at houses for sale online, when suddenly I had another day dream.

It’s fifty years from now. I’m dead. And I’m watching people carry my stuff out of one of the houses I’m looking at. Because it’s no longer my stuff, no longer my house, I’m busy being dead, and all the money spent on houses and stuff, all the time invested in finding the things that are just ‘so’, all of my life that I invested in having a nice house, nice things, and a nice life … it’s all over. And what do I have to show for it? A bunch of people I don’t even know, hauling all my stuff off to who-knows-where.

Then last week, around 1am, I found myself wandering around the lake near my house. Wandering. Listening to music. Praying. Crying. Asking God what he wants from me. How God could allow some things to happen. And I pictured high school graduation day for all the now-seventh-grade-guys in my group. Many of them have been lost along the way and aren’t here today. We picked up more along the way in the last 5 years. But this, this is it. 7 years of “doing life together”, “running after Jesus”, and “trying to live a better story”. And now what? A bunch will move away to college. Some will get jobs. Some will just disappear.

We’ll keep in contact with a few over Facebook. One or two we’ll keep in much closer contact, maybe for a few years. But most just disappear and everything we did, everything we said, everything that happened, it will all fade into memories. Maybe, if we’re really lucky, something we did together will become a story they tell others as: “I remember when I was in 7th grade and we …”

Blink. Back to now.

What do you do with that? Because I’ve been struggling the last few weeks. I was thinking about this the other night when I was listening to an audio Bible when we came to the uplifting verse in James: “What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” (James 4:14b) Thanks, James.

What should change about the way we live our lives if life’s really that short?

Think about it. Let it keep you awake at night.

Let it bother you.

It bothers me.

It happens in a blink, it happens in a flash
It happens in the time it took to look back
I try to hold on tight, but there's no stopping time
What is it I've done with my life?