None of us knows precisely how much earthly life we have left.
God set a limit of 120 years to human life (Genesis 6:3). Moses said for most of us, “The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty” (Psalm 90:10). Some will be shorter and others longer.
Whatever the length may be, Jesus urged us not to fret about it, asking “which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” (Luke 12:25). Answer: not one of us.
Yet we are counseled to “number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12). And if days matter then so do the hours that make them up. And if hours matter then so do minutes of which they are composed. And if minutes matter, so do moments. After all “we bring our years to an end like a sigh” (Psalm 90:9). Just what will you exhale with your final “sigh”?
In light of these realities I want you to consider the two most important minutes of your life.
Any idea what they might be? The two minutes just before you make life’s biggest decisions? The two minutes it takes you to exchange marriage vows and say, “I do!”? The last two minutes before death?
Those are all very important. But they are not the most important minutes of your life.
Are you ready to consider these two minutes? Are you eager to rethink their strategic nature? Are you willing to change how you use them?
What are the two most important minutes of your life?
Answer: the last one and the next one.
The minute immediately behind you and the one standing immediately before you are the two most significant, impactful, and strategic minutes of your life.
Consider the minute that has just passed. It possesses disproportionate potential to shape the rest of your life. Just how it will do so is largely a matter how you deal with … regrets, wounds, revenge, forgiveness, failure, success, disappointment, discontent (and a host of other issues).
How you deal with that minute and what filled it will go a long way in answering such foundational questions as: Who I am? What am I worth? What difference will my life make? Where am I headed? What matters most to me?
Now consider the minute that stands immediately before you, next in line in the succession of your unfolding life. That singular minute is the only minute of which you can have any assurance. Fact is, you have no guarantee you’ll make it to the end of it. So we better live it well. Doing so requires making some decisions about things like … reality, truth, faith/trust, hope, purpose (among other key matters).
How will you view the minute that has just passed? In light of it, how will you engage the minute that is just now beginning? Answer these two questions and you’ll be well on the way to determining where you’ll end up and what the ride will be like.
The Apostle Paul said, “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5).
All “arguments”; each “opinion”; every “thought.” The minute behind you and the minute before you all speak “arguments,” offer some “opinion” and form some “thought” about what reality is, who you are, what you can do in the face of what stands before you. All of them must be taken “captive to … Christ.”
How are you doing in dealing with the two most strategic minutes of your life right now? What’s the pattern for how you do so? Is it helpful? What determines what you do with those minutes and what you let them do with you?
This next minute might be a good time to consider again these words: “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (Heb. 4:12).
Are you simply letting the minutes slip by? Or are you “redeeming the time” (Eph. 5:16)—specifically, the only two minutes of which you can be certain.