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Posted in: Devotion

03.21.17 ( Denise J Hughes )

Finishing Well

When my husband Jeff turned 35 I said, “Well, honey, it’s official…you’re halfway to 40.”

Without missing a beat, he shot back, “No, I’m halfway to 70.”

My accountant-of-a-husband couldn’t miss coming back with the correct math on that one. So when he turned 45, we had a good time laughing about the fact that he’s now halfway to 90! And I’m not too far behind him.

Yep. We’re in the middle years. It’s safe to say that half of our lives have already been lived. So that leaves us with a good look at the second half.

What do I want to be true of me when I breathe my last?

I want the words of Paul in 2 Timothy 4:7 to be evident in my life:

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

Like Paul, I want to finish well.

In the book of Judges, however, we see many of the Israelites not finishing well. We see a period in Israel’s history when there was no king and everyone basically did what was right in their own eyes.

God raised up judges to lead and keep order, but by the end we see several examples of what can happen when people choose to turn away from God. For example, Micah in chapter 17 literally “buys” a Levite to act as his personal priest, which was against God’s law. And in chapter 18, the tribe of Dan sets up carved images to worship. Here the grandson of Moses, Jonathan, is fully participating in the worship of idols. That’s just two generations after Moses. When we look at the final chapters of Judges, we see what happens when people stop obeying God’s commands and choose to go their own way.

That’s not what I want to be true of me.

So it’s helpful sometimes to step back and look at my own life with an honest heart.

Am I studying God’s Word daily?
Am I following the commands in Scripture?
Am I asking God to reveal those places in my life where I need to repent?
Am I treating others with the same grace that God has shown me?
Am I reaching out to my One Life?

When I step back to remind myself of the bigger picture, I remember what’s most important — that every moment of every day leads me closer to the day I’ll see Jesus face to face.

Because more than anything, I want to finish well.

Throughout the Week . . .

1. When you see Jesus face to face, what do you want to be true of you?

2. What steps can you take today to lead to that place of finishing well?

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About the Author
Denise serves as the editorial coordinator for (in)courage at DaySpring, and she’s the author of the Bible study series Word Writers. She reads three things every day — the Bible, NFL.COM, and PACKERS.COM — sometimes in that order. You can connect with Denise on Twitter or Instagram @DeniseJHughes.

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