I was in church yesterday evening and the priest was talking about All Saints’ Day, referring to the day after Halloween, and which became the theme for the weekend. Being reminded of those who have died and who have passed on, and how we are just “renting” this body temporarily, got me thinking about my father, who died in 16 years ago on Thanksgiving at age 61. I remember the morning of his death being one of the most beautiful days I have ever seen, and of course I am reminded every year at thanksgiving time. But thinking of All Saints’ Day and of my father reminded me of something else, which is the perspective that nothing lasts forever, and that we are here for a short time, and for all the aspirations and worries and stresses that we face, we are all going to die and hopefully go on to a better place.
Think about that for a second, because in that last sentence there were too many things in there and my main point is likely lost in the jumble. In a certain unknown number of years, you and I will be gone, we will die, kick the bucket, buy the farm, take the big sleep. So in the meantime why not jump for the stars? Speak up? Go for your desires? Say what you want? Don’t sweat the small stuff? Go for it? Don’t hold back because you might not get the chance to do this again later. Don’t settle for what you don’t want just to please someone else. Don’t play someone else’s game for the sole reason of being timid and not wanting to upset them.
Now you may already know this and as you read this you are saying …”duh!…” But I often forget and let little things bother me, let those things become the most important thing and take away the moment of now from being something greater, something wonderful. All those moments add up to a significant amount of time; time that will not be coming back to us.
So after church, we got the family into the car. Although the kids were not eager to go to church in the first place, I chose to not focus on their lack of desire and instead just enjoy the fact that we are all together. And that moment, and the moments at dinner, became my gift. I saw the time together as precious, and eventually the kids got out of their slump and it was a really nice evening.