Finite Relationships

Maybe this is just another symptom of the strangeness of my psyche, but Friday morning as I was praying, I was suddenly struck by the incredibly finite nature of every relationship. I mean, before I even met Justin, God already knew exactly how many conversations we would / will have, how many times we would fight, how many hugs he will give me, how many times I will tell him I love him, and even how many texts I will send him throughout our lifetime. I don't mean a vague, abstract number (e.g. Alot!) but a real, specific, tangible row of digits. He knows PRECISELY the number of minutes that I will joyfully share with this wonderful man. To me, that's mind blowing. At every funeral I've ever been to everyone talks in teary whispers about how fleeting and precious relationships are. "You just never know how long you have..." People say to one another and it's so true. But to me, the much more profound truth is that, even though I don't know how long I have to share my life with Justin, God does. He has already seen / determined the very milliseconds of our relationship. He knows how many shots I have at serving, submitting, loving, even tickling Jusje. And I guess the fact that our time together is known and meticulously recorded, currently ticking ever closer to 0, gives me a profound sense of urgency. It's like the difference between knowing you're low on funds versus knowing you have "$5.22." The precision of the thing somehow makes it more real.

I want to treasure every moment: fight less, love more, laugh A LOT, and just enjoy God's glory reflected yet again in the great gift of Jusje. The same feeling goes for my sweet little weasel-boys. I just want to cover them with kisses while shrieking in delight, "I love you! I love you! I love you!" And this got me thinking about other relationships, those periphery, "side-characters" of my life that I don't usually think about very often. What if I only have 10 more encounters with them? Or 6? What about 3? What would I do? What would I say? How would I share Christ's love and grace with them?

And here's my conclusion: I need to SEE every person I come in contact with as a soul, and not just a random bystander. I'm not the main character of my life. Jesus is. It's weird and sounds kind of awkward to say, but it's true. Everything valuable and lovely about my life is from him / by him / through him / toward him / because of him. So maybe I only have 345,987 more conversations with Justin or maybe only 10, but no matter how many or how few, I can rejoice in the great gift of this relationship. What great love the Father has shown us by giving us the capacity for relationship, not only for each other but also for Him. How often I neglect and overlook this treasure.

knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God. (1 Peter 1:18-21 ESV)

finite

Jenny Smith

3705 Oceanview Drive, Denton, TX, 76208