Have you ever wondered how many opportunities you’ve missed in your lifetime? Or how many God-given graces you have wasted?
We are given so many graces and opportunities in this short life that we have. But at the same time, we have wasted many of them, and most of the time we don’t realise how precious these little things are until we lose them.
Opportunity and grace, what is the difference?
Opportunity means the big things that are rare in our life, such as going to a prestigious university or getting your dream job. Grace is those small things that we have in our everyday life such as talking to our friends, reading the Bible, and even walking.
But something important that we need to remember is that both of these are given by God, and it is not always in our grasp. It’s really easy to overlook the small graces that God gives us and even the big opportunities that only come once or twice in our lifetime.
But before we get into that, there are two terms that the Greeks use to different events occurring in our life. In our life, there are important moments (Kairos à e.g. getting into a prestigious university or getting your first job) and when time just flows without the important events in our life (Chronos à e.g. eating, waking up, showering and etc). Looking back at your life you won’t write all the Chronos things, it’s just everyday things. However, when Kairos happens, we tend to remember them for the rest of our lives because they are important moments. These important moments don’t come often, and they will pass quickly.
In Greek mythology, Kairos is a god with only one lock of hair at the front. He is bald at the back. This symbolises how if you are not fast enough catching what’s in front of you, you will miss and barely touch his bald head. He also has two pairs of wings (you can search him up); one pair on his back and the other pair on his feet (one on each foot). This is because he moves very fast, possibly flying past you. The only way to catch him is by grabbing his hair when he is directly Infront of you - It cannot be a second too late or a second too early. It needs to be at the exact right time at the exact right place or not, you will miss him.
Moments move fast and you can only catch them when you get it only if you get it at the right time. Or else, it will move past you and you will miss it. Moments can come and go in the blink of an eye, even if you are eager to get it. In this life, there are many moments that come and go. It is easy to miss the important moments that can change your life. That’s why we must be ready to seize every moment that comes ahead of us.
Don’t take it for granted
Now going back to opportunity and grace. As I said before, opportunities are very important and we can easily miss them. But you also need to remember that the grace of God is also important. Even though it is there, it can disappear anytime. The easiest example is what we face right now, in times of COVID. Currently, in Sydney, we are in lockdown. The things that used to be normal and easy to do (such as walking freely without a mask and hanging out with friends) now cannot be done anymore.
Honestly, I have never thought twice about going out with friends or serving in the orchestra. Because it happens every week, I take these graces for granted. It never occurred to me that one day I cannot meet my friends or go to orchestra rehearsals like usual. One thing that I learned from this lockdown is that the ‘irrelevant’ graces that we are accustomed to can also be taken away - they are not in our hands. They are in God’s hands. Now that we know this, let us not take the grace that God has given us for granted. Let us not wait until grace is taken away to realise how precious these are. Let us use the opportunity God has given us wisely, as it says in Ephesians 5:16, “Making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil”. We need to make use of every opportunity and give thanks for every grace God has given us.
YOLO stands for ‘You Only Live Once’, That we cannot turn back time and that we only live once. Most of you guys have probably heard this term before and it’s familiar. However, the world’s concept of YOLO is different from that of the Bible’s.
The world’s concept of YOLO is that you only live once, so you should make the most of the present moment without worrying about the future. It also means that you should do things that are enjoyable or exciting, even if they are silly or even slightly dangerous. They also use YOLO to say that you’re only a teenager once, so you should live your life to the fullest and have fun endlessly.
The Bible’s concept of YOLO is the same, but at the same time, it’s the complete opposite. The Bible’s concept is that you do only live once, but this doesn’t mean that you do silly things and only focus on the now. You live life to the fullest by GLORIFYING God, especially in our teen years where we are in our prime time. We have lots of time and we are full of energy so God can use us greatly, even in our teenage years.
Now that we know YOLO, opportunity, and grace. Let us not waste, but instead, give thanks for the opportunities and graces that God has given in this short, one life.
There are three things that you need to remember:
- Grace and opportunity are God given, it is not in our hands.
- Grace and opportunity are not always in our grasp; we can suddenly lose them if that is what God wills.
- We cannot take things for granted - give thanks to God, and do everything to the best of your capability. This way, you won’t need something tragic to remind you that we only have this one life and that we are not in control of everything. So give thanks to God what He has given us and do not take things for granted.