December 26, 2016

The Now...

This year has not been the easiest for our state, country or family. There has been so much division in our country, tragedy in our state and disappointment on a personal level. Many we love have suffered devastating loss and tragedy. It’s honestly been unprecedented in my own lifetime. But at one of the many funerals I attended this past year my sister-in-law said to our family, "Let this be a lesson to us. We never know when will be the last time we are together. We need to really BE together more." It struck home with me at the time but as I was reflecting today, it finally sunk in. If I’ve learned anything this past year, it’s been that life is fragile and all too often we don’t know what we have until it’s gone. Why do we spend our days looking back wishing for a simpler time or looking ahead hoping for some future breakthrough and never valuing the beauty and opportunities of today? I am the guiltiest of all at this. I spent a good portion of this holiday season sad- sad that my kids weren’t all with us, sad that my grandbabies were 500 miles away, sad that our parents are declining, sad that our kids aren’t little, sad for those who are no longer here, sad that so much has changed- that I missed many ‘now’ moments that I’ll never get back. 

So I want to vow this upcoming year to do as that song says, "Live like you are dying". We only are guaranteed today. If this all sounds depressing, thats not my intention.  But I'm fed up with not having the perspective of Now! I want to view life differently this year. I don't want to waste precious time grieving moments passed or longing for moments ahead. But instead I want to value the opportunities in the NOW that may not be here tomorrow, that cannot be held onto or saved for later, but are meant to be lived and enjoyed today. 

Can we strive to prioritize relationships this year and to value every moment with one another, not wasting another second with regret, selfishness, division, grudges, unforgiveness, resentments or unspoken love? What better time is there than the holidays to say the things we have always meant to say but have put off. Who knows if we'll have another chance. What better time than now to patch up those misunderstandings, to let go of those grudges, to ask for forgiveness and to give it. What better time than now to speak to each other the things we would say if we thought it was the last time? 

Think about it. And do it. With God’s help, I am determined to. 
May God bless each of you and enable us all this upcoming year to recognize and to live in the now and to be grateful for all God has done in our lives.  It’s a lot more than we realize. Amen

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