The other day I took my blood pressure at my friendly local Wal Mart SuperDuperThanksForYourHusband’sEntirePaycheck Center. My numbers were fine, and the elderly man behind me commented “With a score like that you’re gonna live a good long time!” (note: It is not generally regarded as polite to read someone else’s blood pressure. I suppose it’s regarded as private information, like confession. Sort of a visible gauge of how dissolute your lifestyle is. “Wal Mart Blood Pressure Machine, forgive me. I ate 20 twinkies this week, in the dark of my bedroom closet so no one could hear the wrappers crinkling. And I washed them down with margaritas”* However, I didn’t personally mind him doing so since, well, he was an old fart and old farts are allowed certain liberties.)
I wondered after a moment or two whether I should go back and explain that I was not in any way implying that he had lived “too long”, or that I was trying to joke at the expense of those who struggle with high blood pressure, or that I was being snarky in any way. He was a kindly soul and was trying to compliment me, and I’m not sure what he thought of my response. Frankly, I was just revealing a bit of my heart.
I don’t want to live to be 100. I don’t want to live to be 90. I think 85 sounds okay, but still much too far away. Good grief! It’s over twice what I’ve already lived! I get so tired just thinking about it. I know the Bible says that a long life is a blessing, but how long is long? I’m just a kid at summer camp, begging Daddy to let her cut the visit short.
Earthcamp is pretty, but it’s nothing compared to Home. I’ve made some friends, but I really miss You. There’s a lot of fighting here and it wears me out. When will You come to get me?
I know, I know. There’s-a-reason-I’m-here-and-God-has-a-perfect-plan-and-if-I’m-still-here-I’m-still-needed-so-suck-it-up-and-do-your-best-run-the-race-with-endurance-do-not-grow-weary-of-doing-good-in-due-time-you-will-reap-the-days-are-long-but-the-years-are-short-etc-etc
Don’t get me wrong. I want to be here for my family. I want to make a difference. I want to make an impact. I want to go out in a brilliant blaze of glory. I’m not suicidal. I’m not throwing in the towel. I just want to say sometimes that Life. Is. Hard. And I thank God with all my heart and soul that it’s temporary. Oh God, thank You that this is not all there is! Thank You that eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things which?You have prepared for those that love You. Sometimes I just feel like I can’t wait one more day. I want to see the rooms You’ve created. The crystal sea. The chariots of fire. The cattle on a thousand hillsides. The lion and the lamb laying down together. The angelic host. The New Jerusalem! I want to be in the front row of the concert of praise that goes on forever because we never get tired or hungry or thirsty and our voices never crack embarassingly in the middle of our favorite verse because we are singing it extra loudly.
I want to sit in Your lap and listen to You tell the story of the world over and over again, from beginning to end, and marvel anew each time at how beautifully You planned it all out. You had it all under control. You didn’t miss a single detail. I want to throw my arms around the best big Brother anyone could ever have and let Him wipe every tear from my eye.
I didn’t go back and say all this to the kindly old fart who commented on my blood pressure. Maybe I should have. But I prefer to think he knew what I meant.