There was a time in history when making it to the teenage years was a milestone, a time when one in three infants died before they learned to walk. In the early centuries of American life, big families were the norm because all mothers knew that they would bury at least some of their children. A walk through a forgotten cemetery today shows the destruction of diseases such as influenza and diphtheria upon single families, their children’s gravestones etched with dates only days apart. The very air people breathed carried many contagious germs from one person to another, with no cure to be found.
Today in America, most of us will be blessed with a long life, living well into our 80’s or beyond. And even the psalmist in the bible knew that a head of gray hair is a blessing to behold! But no matter how long our life extends on earth, the bible also tells us to consider it a mere breath—a puff of smoke. This truth should cause us to live soberly, thinking ahead to what comes at the end of our days. We should never take for granted that we have many years left to consider our spiritual health, for God tells us that today is the day to decide if we will trust in Him and receive salvation:
For God says, “Your cry came to me at a favorable time, when the doors of welcome were wide open. I helped you on a day when salvation was being offered.” Right now God is ready to welcome you. Today he is ready to save you. 2 Corinthians 6:2
There is no time like today to receive the greatest gift ever offered, the gift of salvation through Christ Whose birth we celebrate this month. Don’t put it off as the pages of the calendar turn through another year, when today God is ready to welcome you.