I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. ~ Revelation 22:13
The tapestry of our lives is made rich by the many firsts and lasts we experience. They run a full spectrum of emotions.
The first memory we hold.
The first time we moved and had to make new friends.
The first time we moved out of our parents’ home.
The first time we believed and knew Jesus to be God’s son.
The first time we held down a job.
The first time we fell in love.
The first time our hearts were hurt.
The first time we held our own child in our arms.
The first time we left our child in someone else’s care.
The first time we lost a person, to death, to debilitating disease, to a life of willful sin.
The first time we saw someone baptized, knowing we played one small part in planting the seed.
The first time we had to confront someone about a conflict or problem.
The first time we had to discipline ourselves.
The first time we served another, not out of duty but out of love.
The first time we had to decide to wake up and go to worship or go to work or school.
The first time we had to endure the pain that was put in front of us.
The first time we read a scripture and realized the impact it had on our soul at that very moment.
And so many, many more…
And as beautiful and wonderful and hard as the firsts (and the lasts which I dare not list) can be, there is no one that has been there throughout each of them. No one human that is. It’s simply not possible.
The only One who has seen you, who has formed you, whose heart has broken alongside yours, whose spirit has rejoiced with yours, every time, is God.
He is the beginning. He is the end.
He is my beginning. And he will be my end.
He is the one unchangeable factor. So, whether we are in the midst of many good firsts and lasts or many difficult firsts and lasts or perhaps a mix of them altogether, He is in the midst of them all. And He sees them all.
So we can remind ourselves that His promise holds firm, if we cling to Him:
Even when the firsts and the lasts come rushing over us, He is the one who stands with us, beside us, and shelters us. He is enough, even and especially when we feel like we are not enough.
Day by day, and with each passing moment,
Strength I find to meet my trials here;
Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment,
I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.
He, whose heart is kind beyond all measure,
Gives unto each day what He deems best,
Lovingly its part of pain and pleasure,
Mingling toil with peace and rest.
Every day the Lord Himself is near me,
With a special mercy for each hour;
All my cares He fain would bear and cheer me,
He whose name is Counsellor and Pow’r.
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,”
This the pledge to me He made.
Lyrics by Lina Sandell