Categories
Emotions

If Today is the Last Day of Your Life, What are You Going to Do?

I just had a conversation with the youngest and oldest of my five children. For context, they are 18 and 26 years old. We sat down at the same time for breakfast and began to discuss what we would do today, if we knew it was our last day to live. I thought the discussion was hilarious, stereotypical, and insightful. It went like this:

If Today is the Last Day of Your Life, What are You Going to Do?

My answer was simple. “What would I do if I knew today was my last day to live? I’d go to the beach. I’d pray, call, text, and write. I’d communicate my gratitude, encouragements and goodbyes from the sand, serenaded by crashing surf.” I try to keep short accounts with God and people, and I don’t feel like I’d have much baggage to sort out. It was an easy one for me.

Me at the Beach: If Today is the Last Day of Your Life, What are You Going to Do?
The beach is my happy place!

My youngest had a completely different take. He asked, “I’m going to die tomorrow for sure?”

“Yes.”

“Then I can’t die today, right?”

My oldest and I looked at each other. We hadn’t thought of that. I was completely amused by his line of thinking. He continued.

“I’d go skydiving without a parachute.” He started.

“But just because you aren’t going to die today, doesn’t mean you won’t feel pain today,” I interjected. “Wouldn’t it be worse to sky-dive without a parachute and not die?”

Rules crossed out: If Today is the Last Day of Your Life, What are You Going to Do?
Photo by Sarah Kilian on Unsplash (x’s added)
The rules don’t apply on your last day!

He agreed, “Ok, then if today is the last day of my life, and I know I’m going to die tomorrow, I’d do something reckless and die before it catches up to me. I’d rob a bank and spread the money to the poor, like Robin Hood. Or I’d visit people in the hospital with Covid, who have nobody to sit with them, because it wouldn’t matter if I was exposed. I’d switch places with someone sentenced to life in prison.” I’d go out with abandon.

My oldest began to laugh. We looked at her. She pointed out the difference in their personalities and said if today was the last day of her life, she was going to have to tackle a to-do list that was very long.

“I’d be writing my will.”, she stated. “I’d need to clean my room and my car. I’d make sure my bills were paid and I’d email instructions for the person who would take over my job.”

Filed paperwork: If Today is the Last Day of Your Life, What are You Going to Do?
Photo by Anete Lusina on Pexels.com

She chuckled. “I’d be taking care of all the little details, to make it easier on everyone once I was gone.”

I was thoroughly amused by the conversation, even though the subject matter could have been very sobering. Isn’t that so typical of how a first born and a baby of the family would tend to think? I chuckled to myself, as I got an insightful peek into these personalities that I love so much. I really need to ask more open-ended questions.

So, if today is the last day of YOUR life, what are YOU going to do with the time?


“I live my life based on 2 principles. One, I live as if today was my last day on earth. Two, I live today as if I am going to live forever.” 

Author: Osho

“How different would today be if you knew it would be your last one on earth before meeting God face-to-face? We should strive to live every day as if it was our last, for one day it will be!” 

Author: Billy Graham

“May I speak each word as if my last word, and walk each step as my final one. If my life should end today, let this be my best day.”

Author: Anonymous

“Let your light shine, never look back and live as if today is your last day … because it just might be.”

Author: Gena Showalter

“Live as if today is the last day of your life. Love and be kind as if this is the last chance to express it.”

Author: Debasish Mridha

“A person’s days are determined; you (God) have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.”

Job 14:5 (parenthesis mine)

“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”

Psalm 90:12
Categories
Conversations

Moments are Quick but They’re still Mighty! Grab one and Share one – Post 8

I captured this quick moment before it went fleeting by:

Stretching Cat: Quick Moments Post 7
The question mark of confusion was replaced by the exclamation point of amusement

I returned, from the kitchen, to the desk in my home office with a small dish of almonds in hand. I sat in my swiveling chair and swung it to face my computer. I lifted my knees slightly and then relaxed my legs, so my feet could land on the footstool beneath the desk. This has all been done hundreds of times and was completely without cognition, until my feet pulled me forward and clunked to the floor. My elbows landed hard on my keyboard without any semblance of grace. My brain was sent searching for context. In that quick moment, the question mark of confusion was replaced by the exclamation point of amusement. My granddaughter had removed my footstool! As it all became clear, I could hear her behind the couch trying to contain her laughter. She got me! I have to admit, I was impressed!

There is boundless wonder in every quick moment! Tell me about one of yours


Need some background on the Moments Series?
Click here for the Quick Moments Introduction in Post 1.

Categories
Celebrations

Six Interesting Verses, Six Month Old Blog, and a God Who has our Six

Exactly six months have passed since I pressed “publish” for the first time on the Back Porch! I’m celebrating with a number 6 themed post today. Thanks for being here!


I really liked this quote I read:

“Whether you stay six weeks, six months or six years, always leave it better than you found it.”

Jim Rohn

And with six people in my immediate family besides me, plus six extras who have married in or been born recently, if we stay anywhere longer than six minutes, we’re bound to leave a mark. Hopefully, it is for the better.


Bible: Six interesting verses, six month old blog, and God has your Six
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Did you know that there are 66 books in the Bible? They don’t all have six or more chapters, but to celebrate today’s occasion, I looked up every existing chapter six, verse six. I really enjoyed it! I wanted to share my favorite six of these interesting verses with you today.

“Therefore, say to the Israelites: ‘I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment’.”

Exodus 6:6

“Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise!”

Proverbs 6:6

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Matthew 6:6

“For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings.”

Hosea 6:6

“For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin…”

Romans 6:6

“But godliness with contentment is great gain.”

1 Timothy 6:6

Just for fun, here are six amusing quotes:

“My doctor gave me six months to live, but when I couldn’t pay the bill he gave me six months more.”

Walter Matthau

“I hate housework! You make the beds, you do the dishes and six months later you have to start all over again.”

Joan Rivers

“Treat your password like your toothbrush. Don’t let anybody else use it, and get a new one every six months.”

Clifford Stoll

“The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you’re hungry again.”

George Miller

“I grew up with six brothers. That’s how I learned to dance – waiting for the bathroom.”

Bob Hope

It’s better to be known by six people for something you’re proud of than by 60 million for something you’re not.

Albert Brooks

Clock: Six interesting verses, a six month old blog, and a God who has our Six
Photo by SevenStorm JUHASZIMRUS on Pexels.com

Are you familiar with the phrase “I’ve got your six”? It is a military term based on the hands of a clock. If a soldier is facing 12:00, his back is at the 6. So to have someone’s six means you’ve got their back. I wanted to share one more verse that is not a 6:6 but is incredibly comforting because it confirms that God has our six (and our nine and our twelve and our three).

“You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me.”

Psalm 139:5

Thank you so much for celebrating with me! I leave you with a six-fold blessing:

May the Lord
1) Bless you 2) Keep you
3) Make His face to shine upon you
4) Be gracious unto you 5) Lift up His countenance upon you
6) Give you peace
Numbers 6:24-26

Categories
Reflections

Forthright about Fortnite

Are you a gamer? I know and love many gamers, but I am not one. I don’t play, watch videos about play, or appreciate verbal replay. And I admit to a special weariness toward Fortnite, which is why it’s so ironic that God recently used a reference to the game to minister directly and emphatically to my heart. If you missed that story, you can read it here: God Used Fortnite. In that post, I promised to provide more background to explain why I felt loved by His gesture, so here I am to be forthright about Fortnite. My main gripes are simple.

It is a long game with no pause button.

Everybody in my house, except me, plays Fortnite. Oftentimes, they all collaborate, on different devices, as a team together. (Ok, in full disclosure, I have a daughter who doesn’t play, but she didn’t live in my house at the height of my family’s Fortnite craze.) This game can take a long time and there is no pause button. So, what happens when dinner is ready? I have the choice to eat a lonely hot meal or to wait for my loved ones to join me for a cool and crusty one when they can finally break away.

It is a game where sounds are clues.

Because Fortnite requires an awareness of one’s surroundings, a player needs to be able to hear what is happening. Noises like phones, timers, and my voice can be distracting, so my gamers wear noise-cancelling headsets. These allow them to hear every little cyber sound, but no real-world racket. I have perfected the skill of touching someone to get their attention; but even then, I can only expect half an ear uncovered. (Admittedly, there are some perks to this one. If done right, a wispy brush across the back of their necks, when they had no idea I was approaching, can make them convulse in some very entertaining ways!)

It is a game of high emotion.

The headsets worn by the gamers in my family have microphones attached so they can dialog as they play together. When emotions run high, and they need to be heard above the cacophony in their ears, I am treated to a hoopin’ and hollerin’ like nobody’s business, and sometimes from all corners of our home at once! I have actually contemplated getting my own noise cancelling headphones or building myself a separate wing of the house. I jest. Or do I?

It is an addicting game.

We went on vacation soon after my family started playing Fortnite. We rented a nice house near the beach and we had more activities to enjoy than we had time to embrace them. But not a day went by when I didn’t hear someone lament that they weren’t home playing Fortnite. Seriously? Hmmm… they might just get their wish next time!

I joke a bit. A tiny bit. I haven’t exaggerated much. But truthfully, the gaming in my household is not as extensive as it was six months ago and certainly not as intense as a year ago. I like the direction this trend is going because it is a lonesome thing to be the only non-gamer in a Fortnite Family. It is hard not to be bitter about the time and money being spent to play. It is a bummer to be the odd woman out and to feel like the sole resonator of reason.

That is why, when God used a Fortnite reference as a means by which to minister something special to my heart, it felt like salve on a wound. I felt seen in my loneliness and challenged in my frustration and, in a way, made whole on the sore subject of Fortnite.

I’ve been asked why, if my family all plays, don’t I learn to like it too? My answer is always that if I also played, nobody would cook or clean or keep everybody alive. I don’t know if that is entirely true, but it has certainly felt that way at times. Also, I don’t relish the idea of wasting hours on end. I recognize that we all have our vices, and it’s easy to call out the ones that aren’t ours. That could explain why it is natural for me to be jaded and sarcastic and forthright about Fortnite.

Can you relate to my Fortnite experience at all? Is there a hobby you have which tends to be enjoyed at the expense of time with your loved ones? What makes you feel left out in a crowd? Has God been ministering to your heart about any of these things?