Between almost awake and half asleep, my brain registers discomfort. Oh no! An earache! I had so many earaches as a kid and hate ‘em. Just hate ‘em!
The throbbing’s the worst. Each heartbeat bangs on the ear drum. No matter how you twist or turn, you literally feel, and hear, every beat of the heart. Like a marching band, the regular beat on the drum creates a disconcerting percussion concert.
It’s fingernails down the blackboard!
I try to go back to sleep, but things on the “to do” list start cluttering the mind. Too tired to get up, too conscious to sleep, several hours of nothingness tick away in the dark with only my thoughts and the striking of the ear drum with each beat of the heart.
In a way, it’s fascinating. The never seen heart constantly pumps life in rhythm. The body, soul and spirit, it rises, and falls, in a life dance with the ever present heartbeat on the ear drum.
Part of me wishes time to fast forward to a place where discomfort is gone, pain is absent, and agony doesn’t exist.
But then the other side, my brain stands up in protest shouting that life is already speeding by. Enjoy the time, my brain yells in thoughts, even if it’s an ear ache. Savor the time!
They say time goes faster as you get older. That seems right.
Maybe it’s simply because the freshness of the day is lost in the routine and we never push the red record button in the brain. Maybe it takes too much energy after a while to take the mind off auto pilot and actively fly the plane of our destiny.
I don’t know.
In the end, so much doesn’t really matter anyway.
Success at work is important, but not really. I’ve never heard anyone at a funeral admire the deceased for working 70 hours a week, or praise them for the amount of money in their 401(k).
Good deeds, funny moments, kind words, a positive influence on others….that’s what is remembered and praised.
But even then, is that the essence of it all? Is that the full meaning of life?
In a generation or less, all that is forgotten too, whisked away like a molecule of oxygen in the winds of a time’s hurricane.
When the heart beats its last, and there’s always a last, the decisions of today will impact the core destiny of soul. There is more beyond this heartbeat, way past this side of life.
Listening to my heartbeat pound in my ear, I know the beat will stop one day. For now, the rhythm beats on, but one day….
For some, the heartbeat stops at twenty years old. Others, it’s thirty or forty. You may be fifty, sixty, seventy, or fortunate enough to reach eighty.
But someday, sometime, someplace, somewhere…
Maybe after a prolonged illness, or suddenly, without warning…
The heart will stop beating…
At that moment, and for all eternity, the only thing that matters will be, what did I do with Jesus?
It’s something to think about, and if you get an ear ache in the middle of the night, you’ll think about it a lot.