Highland News Leader

When time is short, 'truly valuable' things in life become clear

“You only have a few weeks left to live.” Most terminally ill patients say their life changes dramatically after hearing this news. Each moment becomes a precious commodity to be used wisely and never wasted. Values change and opportunities are taken advantage of. Family, friends, and other people who we wanted to talk to about certain “issues” are no longer put off for another day. We no longer fear what they might think about us if we were to talk with them.

Money, careers, and material possessions lose their value. The “truly valuable” things of life become clear. It may sound weird, but many terminally ill people say there is a value to knowing your time is short. There is also a regret that comes from realizing you’ve wasted so much time for so many years.

In Psalm 90:12, Moses asks God to teach him (and all of us by extension) that our time on earth is short. “Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom,” he says.

Understanding life is short brings a wisdom that causes us to value each moment and to use it wisely.

What does that look like? According to the chapter, it’s a recognition of who God is and how He is involved in every aspect of our lives, thus guiding the decisions we make. What’s ultimately important and valuable is not the stuff of this world that we waste our time on. If it were, the terminally ill wouldn’t change many things in their life.

Though you may not know it, life is short. It passes way too quickly.

Like Moses, you can ask God to teach you to “number your days” and gain the wisdom that comes from this truth.