Benjamin and I have lately been kind of obsessed with the phrase, “How you live your days is how you live your life.” I don’t really remember how it first started, but this has been happening for like a week now. We will be laying on the couch working and Benjamin will randomly proclaim it. Or I will be making dinner and say it as Benjamin walks by. To be honest, I don’t even know who it is we’re quoting…
The first few times Benjamin said it, I just smiled at his silliness and at the way the words sounded strung together. But about the 5th time it was brought up, the words finally sunk in. We have so many plans for the changes, the focus, and the purpose of our lives as we dream about the day that we have it all together. How often, though, do we end our scheming and dreaming with the thought, “But I just need to get through today?” Eventually, all of those “todays” are going to add up to what turns out to be our life.
So what are we going to do about that?
As you might have noticed, I love making lists, and so I sat down and wrote another one. What are some things we can do throughout our “todays” that will add up to a life that is pleasing to God? I wondered. Here’s what I came up with:
1. Focus on God
“Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.” – Colossians 3:2
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” – Matthew 6:33
“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.” – Colossians 2:6-7
This is a big one. Our world is so full of distractions! It is so easy for me to get caught up in busyness here and worry there until I have pushed God into the back-est of my mind’s back corners. If we aren’t focusing on God and making intentional time to realign ourselves with Him through prayer, Bible reading, and church, then our lives will be helter-skelter. He is our Rock, our direction, and our purpose. We need to fill our minds, hearts, and actions with a heavenly focus because the Bible says (and experience proves) that earthly things are just plain empty and shallow.
2. Love Others
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” – John 13:34-35
“Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.”
“For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” – Galatians 5:14
Love is the central theme of the Bible. It is how we show that we are followers of Jesus. It is how we begin to teach the world about God. It is the summary of the commands about our actions to one another.
Sometimes real, Biblical love (1 Corinthians 13) is hard. It’s all about making that decision every day, with God’s help, so that in the end we can say that we have lived a life that tried to imitate the love of Christ.
3. Work Hard
“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might…” – Ecclesiastes 9:10
“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men…” – Colossians 3:23
“He who is slothful in his work is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.” – Proverbs 18:9
The Bible is really big on hard work! It mentions it throughout the Bible in all sorts of places. I think the answer to why is found in Colossians 3:23. We can work hard for the Lord in worship and as a way to let Him serve the world through us. If my days don’t include some hard work, then my life won’t be one in which I did all that the Lord might have had for me to do.
4. Enjoy Blessings
“Nothing is better for a man than that he should eat and drink, and that his soul should enjoy good in his labor.” – Ecclesiastes 2:24
“You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” – Psalm 16:11
“For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” – Psalm 89:11
“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” – Matthew 7:11
God is so good! Despite all of our sin and the sin in the world around us, He has blessed us with so much good, and He wants for us to enjoy the gifts that come down from a Father who loves us! If we spend our days wrapped up in worry or passing by the blessings He has given, then we will miss them our entire lives. So thank Him for all that He gives you, every day!
How you live your days is how you live your life. If we live our days focused on God, loving others, working hard, and enjoying God’s blessings, then I think in the end, we will say that we have had a life well lived, no matter what else happens.
So how has today’s piece of life been? Is it going in a God-honoring direction?