Friday, July 26, 2013

Life in the Rearview Mirror

Heading home on the interstate, I glanced several times in my rearview mirror to make sure she was still following behind. We had both been in the city that day, and were now traveling back to our small town. When she asked to follow me, I gladly agreed. At least then I'd know if she arrived home safely. After all, the traffic moves so fast and well,...she does not. Years of hard physical labor, arthritis and aging in general have taken their toll and slowed her pace. Where did the time go? When she get old? For that matter, when did I get old? Seriously. It seems like only yesterday when I was 12 and she, my mom that is, was the age I am now. I mean, weren't her locks of white a shade of brown just yesterday (no hair dyes were harmed in the making of this blog)? And, when did her fingers become so drawn, and her gait become accented with a limp? Why, she was walking just fine...yesterday. 

As I continued the drive home that day, thousands of memories filled my mind. Memories, like the first time mom let me drive her wood-grain paneled, Country Squire station wagon on that very same interstate. I must have looked way cool behind the wheel of that wagon with my mall bangs, braces and Sally Jesse Raphael glasses. I'm pretty sure my jeans were pinch rolled too. Mom, me, and my keen 80's fashion sense made many trips on that interstate in our "cool" station wagon. Now, those trips are forever memories of the rearview mirror.

I suppose the reality of the saying, "the only thing constant is change" becomes more apparent as we age! Cause, it sure does seem the older I get the quicker life is constantly changing. People, places and things are in my rearview mirror much faster these days. Time sure does fly, but, oh how I routinely wish I could stop the hands of time. Sometimes I catch myself looking at life in the rearview mirror and longing for the past. Pining for a time when my parents, my husband, and my children were younger...a time when I myself was younger. Craving that season in my life when my closest friends were still present and cancer was not so frequently part of family discussions. Reminiscing and yearning for the church I used to know, and the way things were. Just yesterday I was a kid who couldn't wait to grow up. Today, I'm a thirty something year old (and holding!) who doesn't want to grow any older. But alas...time marches on, and just like that – in the blink of an eye – life is in the rearview mirror and we, as well as the seasons in our lives, are constantly changing.

Maybe you're feeling like life is flying by, and you too would like to slow the hands of time. Perhaps you're getting ready to send a child off to college, or... to kindergarten. Maybe you've just lost a loved one, or maybe you've welcomed a new one into your family. No matter what season you're in; what changes you're going through; or where you're at in life – chances are you've longed for time to stand still at one point or another. But, onward we go to face the future. A future full of pleasant, and not so pleasant seasons, that will soon be, life in the rearview mirror.

I love old hymns. There's a reason those beloved melodies and words are still popular today. No matter how fast life goes, or how much the world changes, the message conveyed in so many of those precious songs stands the test of time. Though not as ancient of a hymn as others, I truly enjoy the endeared Bill and Gloria Gaither hymn, "Because He Lives". The lyrics of the chorus speak life and reassurance into me, especially in those moments I wish time would stand still:

"Because He lives, I can face tomorrow. Because He lives all fear is gone.
 Because I know He holds the future, and life is worth the living just because He lives."

He holds the future. What. A. Relief. I am thankful change is not the only constant in my life. You see, I have another constant...a constant that, or rather who, never changes. One who is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). One who is ever present; has plans for me; and holds me in the palm of His hand - always. When time rushes by, His constant presence assures me He knows just where I'm heading, and where I've been. Because He lives, I can face tomorrow...and, life in the rearview mirror.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord,
"plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future".

– Jeremiah 29:11

Time is fleeting, God is not.

Thank you, Lord, for the time You give us here on earth, and for all the wonderful memories You provide. Thank You for holding each one of us in Your mighty, capable hands. Father, help us to remember when time moves fast and when time stands still, good or bad, life is always worth living because You live and You hold our future.


  1. Anonymous7/26/2013

    Before reading this, I had thought I was the only one who might feel this way.

  2. Anonymous7/26/2013

    Thanks for sharing these inspiring words. Very true and important to remember- Time is fleeting, but god is not.