Memorial Day to Labor Day

The two holidays of Memorial Day to Labor Day mark summer for most of us.  I feel sorry for the children who now start school in the sweltering heat of August; in fact, I feel sorry for the teachers too.  Just when tomato canning is in full swing, school starts now.

For my little family of five, Memorial Day marked the first time we took the boat out.  My husband insisted it was warm enough, the kids were always excited to go, and I dragged my feet and took a jacket.  I don’t think a single Memorial Day passes but what the phrase, “Let’s take the boat out” runs through my mind although it has been nearly 25 years ago now. (It is true that the happiest day in a boat owner’s life is the day he bought it and the day he sold it!)

On Labor Day it was always the same thing:  “Let’s take the boat out for the last time this summer.” At least it usually was warm and the family enjoyed diving off the boat platform but it always brought a feeling of sadness to me knowing the carefree days of unscheduled events of summer were ending.

The classroom commanded my life for so many teaching years, I did enjoy the summers off even minus the income.  I taught mostly for the pleasure to teaching, but it did get cumbersome to stay on a rigid schedule.  Ah, retirement!

So, I said all of that to say this:  Our days are numbered.  Not one single one of us knows the future.  We could be struck down on the street walking our dog although we think we have a vast future lying before us.  Health is good, thinking is clear, why not?  Well, because we also remember that only God knows the future and always before us we need to live in the “now” and each day as if it were our last.  That keeps us out of sin’s temptatious reach. Did I just make up a word?  Temptatious?

Psalm 90 is attributed to Moses.  It is a prayer.  Moses prays with tenderness in the Psalm.  In verse 12 he prays, “So teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.”

Happy Labor Day!  We live in a country where we can find useful places to put our energy and at the same time, provide for our needs.  I am thankful for a country where free enterprise is still possible. We can work, and then we can play.


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