Monday, November 29, 2010

"I have no responsibilities here whatsoever."

Do you have one of those movies?  One that if you flip past it on your TV, you can't resist stopping to watch it, no matter how many times you've seen it?  And you do this even though you already own it on DVD?

Yeah, mine is A Few Good Men.  This classic legal/military drama from 1992 has one of the best scripts ever, and has dozens of memorable and quotable lines.  (Yes, 1992...more on that later.)  I drop them in conversations all the time.  Like yesterday...

I was at church in Tallahassee and had a chance to chat with Mark, the pastor and a good friend.  It just so happens that he wasn't doing the message and so he was able to just worship and enjoy the day.  He described it by saying that had "no responsibilties" for the service.  Well, I couldn't resist -- I interjected the line "I have no responsibilities here whatsoever."  If you know the movie, you know this is what second counsel Sam Weinberg (played by Kevin Pollack) said about his role in the case as he was being introduced to JoAnne (Demi Moore).

Thus began a conversation about the fleeting nature of life.  We talked about the fact that this movie was 18 years old.  18 years!  How is that possible?  Then we talked about other movies that were ridiculously old.  Later that afternoon, while on a completely different topic, my friend Steve and I reminisced Thursday night TV shows from the 80s.  Hill Street Blues. LA Law.  The Cosby Show. And the beginning of ER.

Could those shows really be over 20 years old?  Does Steve really have a daughter in college?  Has it really been 28 years since Coach Bryant's passing?  Where the HECK is the time going?

Of course, we know the answer.  From Scripture:
The life of mortals is like grass, 
   they flourish like a flower of the field; 
the wind blows over it and it is gone, 
   and its place remembers it no more. (Psalm 103:15-16)
Or , if you prefer, from the Steve Miller Band:
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin' Into the future. (Fly Like an Eagle)
Yes, life is short.  We are only here for a brief time, and the longer we live, the more we know it.  For those of you who are really young (college, high school, etc.), it doesn't seem that way yet, does it?  Just a heads-up: the more you live, the faster it goes.  I don't know why.  Maybe life is like a roll of toilet paper -- the closer you get to the end, the faster it unrolls.  (Ever notice that?)  Maybe it's math -- every year is a smaller and smaller percentage of your life experiences.  (Math geek answer.)  Whatever the reason, it's true.  Guys, it was just Christmas!  Like last week.  No?  Well, it sure seems like it.

Yes, A Few Good Men has been around for 18 years.  Tom Cruise's future wife Katie Holmes was 13 years old. (Sorry, Tom, it's true.)

So, can you handle the truth?

Life moves on.  Faster and faster.  Knowing this, I want to make mine count.  I don't have as much time as I might think.  Lord, help me to redeem the time, and use it for your glory.

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