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In a New York MinuteIn a New York Minute
by Phil Ware

One of our readers found this article from over four years ago and suggested that it was not only poignant and relevant, but also a powerful reminder to us all about the importance of making the most of our moments in light of September 11.

    Life can turn on a dime. When it does, nothing is the same... ever. Neither are we. Sure, we can recover. Yes, life can be filled with joy again. But we are not the same... ever. Don Henley tried to help us see this in his famous song “In a New York Minute.”

Lying here in the darkness you can hear the sirens wail,
Somebody’s going to emergency, somebody’s going to jail,
You find somebody in this world to love
You’d better hang on tooth and nail,
The wolf is always at the door.
In a New York minute everything can change
In a New York minute it can get a little strange
In a New York minute everything can change
In a New York minute...

In these days darkness falls early
People rush home to the ones they love
You’d better take a fools advice
And take care of your own
One day they’re here and they next day they’re gone.

In a New York minute everything can change...

This is the world we live in. We cannot escape it.
    This is the world we live in. We cannot escape it. So how do we live in it realistically and yet not grow cynical or pessimistic?

Make islands of joy in the middle of the mundane.
Don’t settle for the same old routine. Yes, much of life is a routine we can’t escape. But like a necklace, we can add something special to what is mostly the same—we can inject something of intentional joy and beauty in the middle of the routine.

We live in a culture that lures us into a lie: that we have to do something significant to be significant. We spend so much time trying to be somebody that we never enjoy being who we are and how God has blessed us. So celebrate the grace of God and the moments of joy. But do more than celebrate them, intentionally have them.

This is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it! (Psalm 118:24)

Hang your hopes on what is eternal.
Invest in what won’t burn up, blow away, die, or decay. If you’ve ever been through a flood or a fire, you realize that you can survive the loss of things, but the loss of someone is much more hurtful. But even people can’t be totally relied upon. We’re all vulnerable to failure—Jesus had to suffer through the failure of everyone of his close friends. Only when Jesus is the link to our friendships do we have something eternal.

If anything in our lives is going to last, it will have to be joined to him. It’s no accident that you don’t see hearses with trailer hitches. None of our stuff goes with us. Only what is linked to Jesus is ours forever.

You died [with Jesus in baptism] and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Colossians 3:3-4)

    Life can change in a New York minute. But if what is most important about our life is invested in what is eternal, then even the bad changes in life can’t steal from us the life Jesus longs to give us.

    So what are you invested in?

      Title: "In a New York Minute"
      Author: Phil Ware
      Publication Date: July 16, 1997

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 About the Author
Phil Ware is minister of the Word at Southern Hills Church of Christ in Abilene, Texas. For the past 10+ years, he has also been co-editor of HEARTLIGHT Magazine. For more details, click here.


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