It is a blessing to have a father who fears the Lord. I was blessed in this way, and so were my sons. There were special gatherings over the course of my life when my father, for his children, or my husband, for his, took time to speak blessing and truth into the lives of their children. These are precious gifts and not easily forgotten, but treasured.
Though he’s not my father, I was touched when a dear friend shared what he had imparted to his own children and grandchildren this past Christmas. We think a lot alike, so he knew I would appreciate it, and I did…that’s why I’m sharing!
This father shared with his family a short meditation on The Little Drummer Boy, and then he shared a list entitled, “Things I might have done differently, knowing now what I didn’t know then.”
We all have regrets, or “druthers,” as my father would say. This dear friend had a list of about fifteen, but one in particular caught my attention:
I would consider life less sweet, death less bitter, heaven more real.
I could sit and think on this statement for days.
How do I consider life less sweet?
- By recognizing the temporary nature of life.
- By remembering that getting what you want, doesn’t mean you have it all.
- Victory is sweet but short-lived.
- Realize that newness wears off, even with new clothes, a new car, a new love.
- By looking at the lives of those who live only for this life and recognizing the insatiable desire for more.
- By remembering that just because a good life ends, it doesn’t mean that’s really the end.
How do I allow death to become less bitter?
- By recognizing the truth of the Scripture, “for to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain,” and “where, oh death, is your sting?”
- By remembering who’s on “the other side.”
- By seeing death as a natural extension of life.
- By realizing that if I can survive a loved one’s passing, so can those I leave behind.
- By remembering that Christ welcomes me with open arms.
How can I live as if heaven is more real?
- By not setting my heart on the things of this world.
- By taking this life less seriously and my future life more.
- By remembering that earth is temporary, heaven is for eternity.
- By reading the “heavenly passages” in my Bible more.
- By remembering that Jesus has gone to prepare a place for me there.
- By looking up more than looking down.
So, I thank my dear friend for his list, and pray that as I work to consider life less sweet, death less bitter, and heaven more real, my list of druthers will grow less by the day. I trust yours will too.
Grace and Peace