Here's a question.
Where are you going when you die?
Survey after survey shows that the vast majority of us believe there is life after death.
So why do we live our lives as if we'll live forever?
You'd think we'd live this life as a preparation for the next.
Is that next life important?
Well, if our next life lasts for eternity, then I'd say it makes sense for us to be prepared.
By the way, for a sense of the magnitude of eternity, follow this illustration described by Father Larry Richards of Erie, Pennsylvania.
Imagine an old man who picks up a grain of sand from the shores of Lake Erie and then takes 10,000 years to take one step.
He walks one 10,000-year step at a time to place that one grain of sand on the top of Mount Everest.
Then imagine this man making these trips walking to place every grain of sand from every lake, river, and ocean on the top of Mount Everest.
When he has finished, the first day of eternity has passed.
Mind-boggling isn't it?
So here is the question: If eternity is the length of our next life, why do we waste even one second of this brief present existence on anything that doesn't help us to be ready for the next one?
Comedian Don Novello invented the quirky lovable character of Father Guido Sarducci, Vatican emissary.
Father Sarducci once described heaven as a place where an angel presents us with a box containing all that we lost during our life on earth.
In a premonition, he saw his box in heaven, filled with lost wallets, car keys, watches, and parking tickets.
He says that he now purposely loses things just to make sure he is well supplied when he gets to heaven.
It's a pretty good bit of humor but it carries a subtle message.
Look, I'm not arguing abandonment of your family or your job.
I am, however, urging a reassessment of your daily priorities.
We are all dying.
I recently met a 35-year-old stenographer who two months ago saw life turned upside down as the doctor told her that the pain in her chest came from a malignant tumor. This young mom is thinking about eternity.
Better hurry up and do so.
We are all one pathology report away from eternity. One turnpike car wreck away from facing the path that requires 10,000 years to take one step.
Are you going to do one thing, anything, today that helps you to be ready?
Do you live a daily life that does nothing, in terms of a real plan?
We are not plants. We are not animals.
There is more in store for us after the ICU screen reads flatline.
Pick up a Bible.
Volunteer at a homeless shelter.
Create something good and noble.
Help someone without any concept of benefit or gain for you.
Selflessly love someone.
Forever after you die is a very long time.