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Everything is Breaking

This year everything started breaking at our house. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised. It just seemed to happen all at once.

First it was our white mini-van. One thing after another started going bad on it, and it was adding up! At one point I think we had it in the shop 4 times in 5 weeks. And they gave me a list of about $3,000 worth of other repairs that it needed. The van was breaking down…

And then this summer the washing machine broke. That, in itself, is nothing new, because we’ve made various repairs on it over the years. We’d actually been ‘limping’ it along with some homemade ‘fixes’ to keep it running, but never like this. Something needed to be done if the Ryders wanted to be freshly laundered!

The treadmill starting acting up too. In preparing for races, I’ve certainly put a little wear-and-tear on it lately, but it’s only 2 years old. Let me just say that it wasn’t my most graceful moment when, in the middle running several miles at race pace, the belt just stopped! We’re still trying to limp it along, but I’ve just resorted to going out on the roads for almost every run, no matter the weather.

Then the kitchen faucet started dripping. It was no big deal at first, but it got a little worse so I got out my tools and set about the task of taking it apart to replace a couple gaskets… Easier said than done. Long story short - we now have a brand new kitchen faucet!

The shower drain started leaking, staining the ceiling in the kitchen…

The Wi-Fi router kept cycling on and off and had to be replaced…

A hinge on the front storm door broke when it got caught in a gust of wind…

And on top of all that, one morning this summer I was in the basement and noticed water on the floor under the furnace. It wasn’t a lot, but I know enough about furnaces to know that they aren’t supposed to leak. Not all over the floor at least. After some inspection and a visit from the technician, it was determined that a rather significant part of our air conditioning system was broken, and it was highly recommended to replace the whole thing!

Now, none of this should have been a surprise. The van was 12 years old and had over 214,000 miles on it… We bought the washing machine in our 2nd year of marriage, so it’s over a quarter-century old… The Wi-Fi router was a hand-me-down that had seen better days… And the A/C unit in our house was the original one installed before all the sheetrock was even up, back in 1995. All of these things had performed admirably for a long time. But they were now old. And tired.

All this simply proves one of the truths of life…everything breaks!

It’s actually the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, commonly known as the Law of Increased Entropy… The quality of matter and energy deteriorates gradually over time. Everything in this physical life is breaking down. It’s getting older, slowing down, and just won’t last forever. That’s why we can’t be all caught up in the things of this earthly life.

Colossians 3:1-4 “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”

Maybe you’re like me and you tend to get used to the comforts and conveniences of modern technology. But it doesn’t last forever. Or maybe you get your heart set on your job or your hobby or how your team is performing. No matter how much pleasure or fulfillment those things can bring, they’re passing away. They’re just like a Brown’s lead…They won’t last.

There are just a couple things that will last, into eternity. Of course God will last. He is eternal, and the truths and principles of life that He lays out in Scripture will stand the test of time. And people, our souls, will move on from this life to the next. But that’s it. God, Scripture, and human souls – that’s what lasts forever.

So if you’re going to get your heart set on something, set it on God. He’ll never break down. And if you’re looking for an eternal investment, pour your time and energy into the spiritual well-being of people. Love them to life! They’ll be eternally grateful.

I guess maybe a great way to live could be summed up in a phrase I heard years ago: “Use things and love people, not the other way around.”

Everything in this life is breaking down. So set your heart on things above. Live with eternity in view…

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