I’ve had the wonderful chance to think a little more about life and the purpose behind it the past few weeks. Life, and living, once seemed so solid, but recently things have suddenly seemed less sure. During the past month or so, I’ve had 4 opportunities to think about this life and the next: my mission president had a major heart attack, my uncle died while in surgery, an old teacher died the following week, and Easter. The first three events took me by surprise, and the first 2 took everyone by surprise.
Life is a gift from our Heavenly Father. He has given us this chance to learn and grow. There is a purpose to our lives here, but it is easy to lose it in the daily struggle. I found myself questioning so much of what I was doing. Is it really worth the time and energy when there are really so few minutes in the day? If I were to die tomorrow, would I wish I had spent my time differently? Should I take a nap tomorrow or spend time with my roommates? Perhaps I really want the nap. Does that really make a difference? If I were to die tomorrow, I’d rather have made someone happy then slept an extra hour.
It reminded me of a talk I heard several years ago in General Conference. The speaker encouraged us to think about how we spend our time by viewing things through the lens of eternity. Our choices should be focused around those thing that are important for that span of time after this life. If it won’t matter then, why should it matter now?
Talk about the simple formula for life! I cannot say what is really important to another person or what will change the eternities for them, but the old phrase of “you can’t take it with you” seems more real. I don’t want to play the keeping-up-with-the-Jones’ game, nor count my coins like Scrooge while others around me freeze for lack of fire and life.
Even the Savior remarked on the need to work and prepare for the next day: “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: for the night cometh wherein no man can work” (1)
We are here to learn and to show our Father our willingness to follow His plan for us. Though distractions abound, life does not need to be complicated by cluttered in purpose; we follow our Savior and do those things that allow us to serve others best. We are to “follow Him” (2) and do all that we can do to be more like the Master.