“…my earnest expectation and hope, that I will not be put to shame in anything, but with all boldness, Christ will even now, as always, be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death..” – Philippians 1:20

 

September! A season of fruit-bearing abundance. Looking forward to Fall and expecting the harvest. Also we wonder, maybe anxiously, “two thirds gone, how will I finish the last third of this year?” When I arrive at September I am always reminded of the September day fifteen years ago when I received a diagnosis of cancer with a prognosis of six months to live. When I think back on that time I feel closely connected to a poem Pastor John Piper quotes in his book “Don’t Waste Your Life”. It’s a poem he wrote some forty years earlier entitled, “The Lost Years”, the refrain of which exclaims, “I’ve wasted it!, I’ve wasted it!” My age was mid-life, the situation prompted me to hurriedly look back, counting my life’s fruit.

 

Surprisingly, even though I had lived my life busily and enthusiastically, I too heard my heart cry, “I’ve wasted it!, I’ve wasted it!” Because my life was submitted to myself and not to the Creator God who is my Master, who has given me life, and to Whom I must give an account of my life. At that moment I was immediately driven to bow down in repentance. I confessed to the Creator God, “I have wasted the life You have given me”, and I vowed to pour myself out to exalt Jesus Christ with whatever time I had left.

 

My physical situation was not resolved. In fact, I would soon and repeatedly experience chemotherapy treatments which brought me near the limits of physical weakness. But in my heart I still exalted the Lord Jesus only. I reaped a spiritual harvest that September through recommitting myself to the Creator God.

 

Now, as I come to another September, I pause to remember my vow, to exalt Christ, may He make me faithful as a worker for the harvest of salvation.

 

Sooin Mimi Hughes

 

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