Countdown by Laura Shaw
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"For in Him we live and move and have our being."
Acts 17:28a (NIV)
minimum. And the last one checked out mentally about two weeks ago. As a mom who schools them half
the time at home, I’m probably somewhere in between the last two.


What about our time left on earth?  I’m on the fence as to whether it would be helpful for me to know how
many days I had left before I met Jesus for the first time. How in the world would I respond to the
countdown? Finishing strong, muddling through whatever came my way, or checking out and putting my
feet up until the day comes.

I was reading Revelation 3 this morning (I would encourage you to read the whole thing), but it’s basically
a call to three different churches to continue faithfully, reminding them how to finish strong (my slant for this
topic). It revitalizes me when I recognize passages of Scripture that show the Lord’s all-knowingness. He
sees our tendencies and weaknesses, and then shows us what to do with them through the relevance of
His Word. It’s His way of having a conversation with us personally.

Here are slices and slivers of the passage from verses 1-10 (the Message version) that jumped out at me,
jumpstarting my engine at the same time.
Do you find that countdowns can be an effective way of keeping one motivated?
These past few weeks, my kids have been counting down the remaining number
of school days. I know many students, teachers and parents are doing the same
thing.

However, I’ve found the countdown has affected each family member differently. I’
ve got one child who is pushing to make sure every last test and assignment is
as high as it can be. I’ve got one just going through the motions, doing the bare
“I see right through your work. You have a reputation for vigor and zest, but you’re dead,
stone-dead. Up on your feet! Take a deep breath! Maybe there’s life in you yet…”

“Think of the gift you once had in your hands, the Message you heard with your ears—
grasp it again and turn back to God.”

“If you pull the covers back over your head and sleep on, oblivious to God, I’ll return
when you least expect it, break into your life like a thief in the night.”

“Are your ears awake? Listen. Listen to the Wind Words, the Spirit blowing through the
churches.”

Contrasting:
“You don’t have much strength, I know that; you used what you had to keep my Word.
You didn’t deny me when times were rough.”

“Because you kept my Word in passionate patience, I’ll keep you safe in the time of
testing that will be here soon, and all over the earth, every man, woman and child put to
the test.”
I needed to hear these verses, friends. Especially this one:
“Are your ears awake? Listen. Listen to the Wind Words, the Spirit blowing through the churches.”

It is His Spirit who will enable us to finish strong, but we have to listen to Him. Now is our time to repent,
wake up and listen to Him so we know what to do and when to do it. HE will revive us, HE will strengthen
us, HE will give us safety at each dangerous turn.

Today, join me in the countdown—the one that counts each moment inside of us as important to Him,
giving us the instincts and discernment we need to live well. May we take a deep breath in order to tune
Him in, grabbing onto the Life who provides passionate patience within us—ALL so we can finish strong
for our Lord, the Eternal One.