The court jester was overcome with grief. His world was at an end! For a long time he had served the and his court, keeping them amused whenever they called upon him. But in a moment of thoughtlessness he had displeased his ruler who had ordered that he be put to death.
“However,” said the Caliph, “in consideration of the merry jests you’ve told me all these years, I will let you choose how you are to die.”
“O most generous Caliph,” replied the jester, “if it’s all the same to you, I choose death by old age!”
I suppose, if given a choice, that’s the choice all of us would make. Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately), though, that choice is not ours to make. We know (all too well) the fragile nature of life. And perhaps it is for the best. If we were guaranteed 90 years on this earth, we would be mighty tempted to wait until the last year or so to get serious about God (just like putting off those term papers in college!). With a realization of the uncertainty of life, we recognize the need to be prepared at all times.
“LORD, make me to know my end, and what is the measure of my days, that I may know how frail I am. Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths, and my age is as nothing before You; Certainly every man at his best state is but vapor.” (Psa. 39:4-5).
May you be prepared for the joys that await when this life is over!