I like the epitaph that Benjamin Franklin wrote for himself at the age of 22 when his occupation was co-owner of a print shop. (The epitaph was not actually inscribed on his tombstone.) The words, I think, remain powerful for us today: The body of BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, printer, like the cover of an old book, its contents torn out, and stripped of its lettering and gilding, lies here…. But the work itself shall not be lost. For it will (as he believed) appear once more, in a new and more elegant edition, revised and corrected by the AUTHOR.
I’m intrigued by the fact that, Franklin looked at his occupation and wrote an epitaph based on his work. His faith in God was obviously wrapped around that work. He didn’t look at himself, by any stretch, as a perfect person, and he admitted this several times in his life (he lived to be 84).
What of us? How is our faith in God wrapped around our daily lives? How does our faith affect our relationships with family and friends? How does our faith get wrapped around the work we do, the places we go, the world we encounter? Does our faith matter and influence our daily living? How so?
As Benjamin Franklin noted, God is the AUTHOR of life. So I have more questions. As God has given us the free will to write the story of our lives, how do our daily actions and decisions show God’s love and grace in our lives? How do I demonstrate, by the way that I live, that God is the author of my life? How am I allowing God to enter into the authoring of my life? Am I asking for this in my daily prayer?
I admit that sometimes I scribble over God’s beautiful writing with my self-centeredness, my sin, my weakness, my frailties. Sometimes I destroy the beauty of God’s writing on my heart, on my soul, in my mind. But, thanks be to God, I don’t have a permanent writing instrument for the heart, mind, and soul! God does. And God can undo the awfulness of my heart, mind, and soul through the power of grace and forgiveness. I repeat an earlier question: Am I asking for this in my daily prayer?
This is what I believe: God is the author of life. God is the author of my life. God is the author of eternal life! Amen!