Friday, May 25, 2012
A Life Well-Spent
It’s been one of those weeks. On top of it being Memorial Day weekend, I’ve heard just enough heartbreaking news to get me thinking about life. Our culture is so fearful of death, we tend to ignore it completely until it strikes close to us. But do we really ignore it or do we just avoid it? Life is brief, a vapor, a blade of grass, in comparison to eternity. We have no control over when it ends. I expect that’s why so many people choose to deny it’s presence.
We like to believe we’re in control of our lives but we’re not. We can’t control a disease for which there is no cure, or a drunk driver from snuffing out young, innocent lives. I remember reading the story of a man who recalled spending some precious time with one of his daughters when he could have said, “wait until later, I’m busy right now.” In a matter of days the family’s van was caught in a flash flood. The father was sucked out an open window and swept away. He survived but his wife and children died. Do you think he treasured that memory of time spent with his daughter? What if he had decided he was too busy to take time out?
People in the United States are some of the most narcissistic in the entire world. We’re so consumed with “me, me, me” that no matter how much we talk about loving our families and friends, the fruit is in our actions and what we deem important. Our lives are far too short to waste on trivial things. They’re too brief to turn down the opportunity to connect on a deeper level with a loved one or friend instead of pursuing some vain interest.
We all have opportunities to impact lives for the future, whether it be our children, our spouses, friends, and even strangers. We leave no legacy in how many video games we played, sporting events we attended or movies we watched. Our legacy will be found in how we impacted those closest to us. We’ll be remembered for how we spent our lives and the example it leaves for those who follow us.