Life is Short

Blog – 12-7-16

“Life is short, make every day count.” I’ve probably heard that saying hundreds of times in my life. At times it has even felt trite and rather contrived…until reality makes it very real.

A friend of mine died on Sunday. I had a surprise birthday party for my husband back in September, and she was there, looking healthy and beautiful. A little tired, I thought, but she was fine. Within a couple of days, life changed on a dime.

She went to the ER  because she just knew something wasn’t right. She was having trouble breathing and wasn’t feeling well. They did a scan and found a tumor on her lungs. She has never smoked, but she was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of lung cancer. Radiation and chemo treatments started within hours.

Seven weeks later, she’s gone.

I’m still in shock, to be honest. How could this happen? How does someone who has never smoked get lung cancer and die so quickly? Why couldn’t they do anything for her? Why her? She’s one of the sweetest people I know. She was recently remarried to a wonderful, Godly man, and they were living a beautiful new life together.

Why, why, why?

I don’t think we will ever know why this side of heaven, but one thing I do know, Camy loved Jesus and faith was at the center of her being. She and her husband, Dave, had a peace during this horrific time that can only be found in faith. I know she’s dancing in heaven right now, and she wants her family to know this same Jesus that she knew so well.

I know Camy would tell us all, “Life is indeed short. Live it well!”

The holiday season can be brutal. Yes, it’s a wonderful time of year, it truly is my favorite time of the year, but it’s also hard. Many of you reading this have lost loved ones close to the holidays, others are separated from ones you love, and still others find themselves in a broken relationship with your family that you don’t believe can be mended.

Maybe it’s time to take the first step towards reconciliation with your family. Things may never be like they used to be, but maybe that first step you take will lead to a whole new relationship you never dreamed you could have. You will never know unless you take that step.

Maybe if you yourself have experienced the loss of a loved one at this time of year you can be intentional about reaching out to someone you know who is experiencing the devastation for the first time. No one can help and minister to their hurt as much as someone who has experienced it. You might be the beacon of light they desperately need.

If your loved one can’t get home this year and you’re feeling lonely, maybe you can ask someone you know can’t make it home to their loved ones to join you. Both of you will be blessed!

I know one thing is sure, we shouldn’t wait. If fences need mending, mend them! If someone needs to take the first step, let it be you! Don’t live another day wondering “what if.”

None of us is guaranteed another day.

After rearranging some flights to Nashville so I can be in town, I will sing at Camy’s funeral on Thursday, if I can make it through the tears. I will do my best to bless her family and honor her request. Then I will hold my loved ones close to me, go out of my way to reach out to a friend, and I will try to remind myself over and over again that life is indeed short. Live it well!

Hugs and love,

~Jill

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