One by one, step after step, we walk closer to the end. "End of what?" you may ask. The end of all roads, I should think- the end of life. Miles, years, and moments pass by. And with time going away, friends and loved ones soon follow. So within this journey, at certain milestones, we stop, rest, and reflect on the memories and friends we made.
The end of the school year serves as one milestone in which one can reflect. As friends depart from each other and graduates must say their final goodbyes, a somberness can be felt, a sort of death. For death means separation; friend separated from friend; classmates separated from each other. Yet in the surreal and somber moment comes a time to look back. To remember.
Milestones come as life is given and taken away. When death comes knocking and tears are shed together for the final time, the soul is forced to remember both joy and sorrows. "She was loved," it is often said as the heart, remembering, bears the separation of the grave. In looking back, we face the abrupt reality that life is short.
Just as death serves as a moment to remember, so does life. Can one remember forward- to think about the future joys of marriage, birth, and children? But since we are stuck in the present, we are left to meditate on the joys we have been given. Indeed, we celebrate the life given to us everyday by remembering our Lord who gives it.
Before his death, Joshua called the children of Israel to remember. He desires for them to pause and reflect on the milestones the Lord brought them through. They were called to think on how the Lord brought them out of Egypt, across the Red Sea, through the wilderness across the Jordan, and into the Promise Land.
Joshua asked them to think of the victories taken in the name of the Lord. Finally, at the milestone of his death, he challenges them to choose. "Choose this day whom you will serve," either the gods of the pagan Ammonites or the Lord of Israel (Joshua 24:15).
My dear friend, as you come to milestones, either of life or death, pausing to reflect, look to what the Lord has given you. Cherish the friendship and love you have been give. In regard to both joys and sorrows, I ask you to remember that, if you are God's child, you have hope. For you have been brought out of darkness and into the the light of the Son of God.
We remember forward to the hope of eternal life in the kingdom of God through Jesus Christ. In looking to that blessed hope, choose to live in manner that reflects that hope. Choose today to serve the Lord.