The time is now

A pastor and his family were taking a few days of vacation over the Memorial Day weekend. When he pulled into the gas station near his house, he noticed a long line at the pumps. The owner of the station spotted the minister and walked over to talk to him.

“I’m sorry for the delay, Reverend. It seems like everybody waits until the last moment to get ready for a long trip,” he apologized.

“I know what you mean, Fred,” said the pastor. “It’s the same in my business.”

A man went to see his doctor. He was a hypochondriac, always imaging he had contracted some dread disease. As he sat down on the examining table, he began to recount all the suspicious and worrisome symptoms he thought he could detect. He ended his tale of woe and fear with: “How long do you think I have to live?”

Holding back a smirk, the doctor looked at his watch and told the man, “Ready, set, go … live.” Confused, the man replied, “What do you mean, doc?”

The doctor leaned over until he was just a few inches from his patient’s face. “I mean you’re so worried you’re dying that you are forgetting to live!”

Two extreme positions:

  1. I’ve got all the time in the world; I can make changes, grow up, get serious … I’ve got time.
  2. It could be all over today, tomorrow; life is so unfair.


None of us knows how long we have. No one can guarantee a quantity of years, but everyone has something to say about the quality of years. You get to fill that dash that will go between your birth and your death. Jesus said we shouldn’t be anxious about tomorrow because today has plenty of challenges (Matthew 6:34). What kind of steward am I of this moment, this day? I might not have another.

You and I probably can find ourselves somewhere the two positions mentioned above. It might help to answer this question: “Are you living to die or dying to live?” Life is too precious for us to take for granted, too meaningful to obsessively worry over.

“Lord, help me make the most of today. Show me the wonder of this gift of life. Your mercies are new every day!”

This entry was posted in Commentary and tagged on by .

About Mark Wilbanks

Dr. Wilbanks became Wieuca’s fifth senior pastor in February of 2012. Mark’s father, Oliver Wilbanks, served as Associate Pastor here from 1966 to 1982. Wieuca had a tremendous influence in shaping Mark’s call to ministry during his teenage and young adult years. A graduate of both Southern and New Orleans Baptist Theological seminaries, Mark has served churches in Kentucky, Florida, and Georgia. He pastored Southside Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida for 17 years and Bradfordville First Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Florida for ten years. He and his wife, Kim, were married in 1979 and have two sons, Andy and Jordan. Andy is married to Lindsay and they have a son, Cade, a daughter, Ruthie, and welcomed their third child, Samuel, in October.

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