We are all given two of the greatest gifts anyone can have, that of time and life. Every day, every hour, every moment we are alive is a treasure that should be held close to heart and fully lived. We especially need to pause and celebrate the lives of family members and friends that surround us. It is this special interconnectedness with those whom we share a common heritage that gives us hope for the future and roots that anchor us in a good way to our past. When these are missing, so is the foundational fabric that holds the family and society together.
What I have noticed recently is that so many days often slip by quickly and unappreciated. When they do, a loss has occured that can never be fully recovered. The time we should have taken advantage of, the friends we should have visited or the loved ones we should have reached out to are soon gone and the opportunity to build a history together has vanished.
Being a minister I have been at the bedside of those who were near death. As the time for their departure drew near one common thread was evident. Not one wished for a bigger income, more time to fish or hunt, more recognition or more vacation time. They all wished they had not wasted so much time persuing things that were destined to fade away. They all wanted more time with those they loved.
If that really is the heart cry of those near death perhaps we, the living, should consider how to better invest the time we have rather than selfishly spending it on what works for the moment. Isn’t that a great word? Invest.. I like the sound of it. To invest means we think about it and make a plan to produce a lasting and valuable increase. When we invest in others that’s exactly what happens. We do what we do to deliberately make things better. It’s living our life on purpose to more intimately connect with those who matter to us the most.
As Thanksgiving day draws near ask yourself what you would do differently if you knew this was your last Thanksgiving. Who would you invite to share the day? Who would you call to let them know how much they mean to you? Who would you visit and try to restore a relationship with? Are there words of love and affirmation you have failed to share with others who need to hear them? If there are… then move beyond what is holding you back and go live your life on purpose. Make a difference, a real difference while you can! When its your time to depart this world you will do it with satisfaction, knowing you made the most of the time you had.