Life is not about what you can get. It is always about what you pass on. Even when you are dying, you have the power to bless. And aren’t we all dying? Some of us will die sooner and some later, but all die eventually. God has given you life so that you may be a blessing to others. What will you do with God’s gift: spend it on yourself or use it to be a blessing?
I knew a man in his early 50s who was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He had always dreamed about travelling the country in a RV and his diagnosis left him feeling cheated and bitter. Without consulting his wife, he spent a substantial portion of the family savings to buy an RV, even though it left her future and financial security in a perilous situation.
Sadly he was too sick to chase his dream, so even this grab for the gusto was an abortive failure. Instead travelling the country, the RV sat uselessly in his driveway, driving a wedge between himself, his wife and his children.
How much better with his remaining time to do all in his power to care for his wife and children, instead of throwing a pity party for himself? He cast himself as a helpless victim who must grab for everything he can in order to rectify a perceived wrong. However, in so doing he surrendered his personal power and what little agency he still had.
This man saw himself as a powerless victim who had to balance the scales of injustice by pursuing his own dream, even at the cost of his family. Had he chosen to bless his family, he would have transformed himself from powerless, self-pitying victim into a powerful lover who would leave a deep impact on his family.
Jesus has set the example that we must follow. In John 12:37-38 he says, “Now my soul is troubled. And what should I say—‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it is for this reason that I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” Jesus could have saved his own life. Instead he offered it for us and in so doing glorified God. God grant us the grace to follow his example.