The other day I heard someone say of Erma Bombeck, an American popular author who had a long career as a mother, homemaker and author regarding same, and wrote of the era in which I grew up, that she had the following to say about how she saw the end of her life.
I paraphrase here…
She said that she wanted to arrive wherever she was going at the end of her life (heaven I think) and have God ask her to empty her pockets, asking her if she had used up all the talents and opportunities that she had been given to work with. She wanted to be able to answer that she had used up everything and had nothing that she could return unused. I hope I got what she said right, but even if I didn’t, this is what I took from what I heard.
The concept really hit home for me. I like the idea that we might be given raw materials to work with and that our job throughout our lives might be to use up everything with which we arrive, leaving with empty pockets, having lived a full life.
So I gave it some thought. What did I arrive with in my pockets? What talents do I have? Do I recognize them? Have I used them as much as I might, or am I hiding any of them where no one can see them, let alone make use of them? So far as I am aware, I think I use my talents, big or small.
And what about opportunities? Have I taken full advantage of the opportunities that have come my way? Have I shared them? I’m not quite as sure of this one as I am about the talents I have. I suspect that I may have been scared on some occasions, although no specific situations are coming immediately to mind. I recognize that opportunities sometimes look like risks to me – risks that are too big.
How about you? Are your pockets empty? Are you finished yet or do you still have some things stored away in your pockets that have yet to see the light of day, before you are asked to empty them out and reflect on what you haven’t used? Hmm.