Thursday, June 28, 2012

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow

Grass is supposed to be green, not brown, right?

Weeks ago I mentioned we had our front yard reseeded, spending money to grow grass. It worked. Areas where there’d only been dirt – turning into mud during heavy rains – sprouted thin blades of grass and the yard slowly turned from brown to green. We had a “lawn” again.

Last week we went out of town. In our absence scorching heat and insufficient water conspired to stifle the new growth, reverting some of the newly green covering back to brown.

Since our return – no rain in sight and more hot weather predicted – I’ve watered the “grass,” trying to grow greenery so I can mow when (and if) it grows long enough. Somehow that picture seems askew.

But this grassy reality mirrors everyday life. We spend much time and energy in pursuits that seem attractive at the time, only to fade eventually. They fall short of expectations; we lose interest in them, or find something “better.” All that effort, with nothing to show for it.

The Bible employs this “here today, gone tomorrow” grass analogy several times. For instance, Isaiah 40:6-8 declares, “All men are like grass, and their glory is like the flowers of the field…. The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.”

Years ago a wise friend said, “Only two things in this life will last – God’s Word and people.” Personal and professional goals come and go; styles and traditions change; people become celebrities one day and nobodies the next. The bright, shiny stuff we eagerly acquire breaks, becomes tarnished, or gets old. Like grass, they fade away.

But the Word of God has endured for more than 2,000 years and shows no sign of losing its impact, to the chagrin of nonbelievers. Its “eternal verities,” as theologians would say, remain as true and relevant today as ever. The author of the Word is unchanging as well: “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

And people are God’s primary interest on earth. Storms, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods and fires destroy splendid structures and breath-taking scenery. However, men, women and children – the Lord’s consummate creation – remain His focus. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believe in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

So we might be wise from time to time to assess our lives, goals and priorities. Are we devoting ourselves to “growing grass,” or using our time and talents for things that will last?

No comments: