For to me life is Christ, and death is gain… I am caught between the two. I long to depart this life and be with Christ, for that is far better. ~Philippians 1:21, 23
I don’t know about you, but sometimes my prayer is “Beam me up Lord!” Some days I just want to go home and be done here. It’s usually when I’m sick or tired, or tired of fighting off negative thoughts that seem to overwhelm me somedays.
I think I’m afraid of getting old. The call of heaven gets stronger and stronger as I experience the inevitable signs of aging. Already I have some arthritis-like pain in one of my hands, my hearing is definitely getting worse, and I question whether I’ll be able to take care of Jim if anything happens to him. My brother has dementia at only 66 years old, and I’m praying we don’t have to go through that!
It can be tempting to say “Well, I’ve done enough. We raised 4 kids who are now 4 awesome adults, I’ve written two books, recorded 3 CDs of music, had a nice run as a retreat leader, and enjoyed all of the ministries I’ve been involved in for so many years. It’s time to kick back, quit worrying about trying to lose weight, do nothing and enjoy the quiet. (And the not-so-quiet when my grandkids come over.)
My prayer however, is that I won’t do that! My prayer is that I will get up each day, thankful for another one, and try to learn something new; that I will continue to use the gifts God has given me to bless others; and that I will get out of my rocking chair and explore the beauty of the world around me.
Yes I look forward one day to meeting the Lord face to face and to begin exploring heaven with those who have gone before me. But until then, I want to keep living life the best I can, giving all I can, loving my family and all those the Lord brings into my life and cherishing whatever time I have left here. Please pray for me, and I will pray for you!
Janice Carleton and her husband Jim live in Bainbridge Island, Washington, and partner with Passionist Fr. Cedric Pisegna in Fr. Cedric Ministries. She is the mother of 4 grown children and grandmother of 6. Janice also leads women’s retreats and recently published her second book: God IS with Us. Visit Janice’s website at http://www.janicecarleton.com/ or email her at [email protected].