Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,--Hebrews 12:1

Friday, July 8, 2011

Life is too short to put things off

Too short to put off until tomorrow what you can do today. Amanda's death taught me that.

Every year we travel to North Carolina to see my wife's family. We have since 2006, when we sold our farm and I started teaching. One of my best friends of all time, whom I served with in the Marine Corps, who was in my wedding, whose wedding I would have been in if the Corps hadn't had other plans for me that weekend, whom I spent six months aboard a Navy ship with, lives just outside of Charlotte. Yesterday was the first time I made the trip to see him since we got out of the Marines in 1995.

I remember when he met his wife, but yesterday was the first time I saw her since we left the service. They have three kids, the oldest 17, and yesterday was the first time I met them. Wonderful people, wonderful friends, more like family really, but for 16 years I couldn't take the time, or make the time to visit.

But yesterday, Courtney and I made the trip from Jacksonville, NC to their home and spent the afternoon with them. We were truly blessed. We've been missing out, and I wish more than anything that I had made the time to visit while Amanda was still alive so she could have met them too. I never thought I had the time, and I thought there would always be tomorrow.

"Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring." -- Proverbs 27:1

Pat was one of two friends from the Corps who dropped everything and came to Arkansas when Amanda died, friends I had not seen in 16 years. I told them both, while they were at my house, I didn't think I would have done the same for them. They were willing to put their lives on hold to be there for a friend who they had not seen in 16 years, but I knew myself well enough that I knew I would not have done the same.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." -- Romans 8:28

I'm a different person now. Amanda's death taught me that life is too short to put important things off. We're neither guaranteed another tomorrow nor even another breath, and good friends are far too important.

Thank you, Amanda, for teaching me that, and thank You, Jesus, for giving me the opportunity to visit my dear friends.

If you don't know Jesus as your personal savior, if you're missing the faith, hope, and love written about here, if you want the peace that we as Christians have in our lives, please visit our Got Jesus? page for step-by-step instructions on how to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.

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