“In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” – Abraham Lincoln
I’ve been thinking about death a lot lately. Not that I am morbid or depressed or suicidal by any means, but I think I have kept death close enough at bay that it has afforded me the perspective to enjoy the days that I have. Though it may sound cliche, tomorrow truly isn’t guaranteed. Today is all we got.
A friend sent me a video interview of a young lady (who, by the way, happens to be my neighbor across the street; I used to be friends with her younger brother) who lost her husband to cancer at the early age of 28. Hearing about her story was both sobering and encouraging, because though he didn’t have much time left, he made the most of each and every day. Every sunrise was special. Every meal of which he partook was truly grace. There was nothing taken for granted, and he lived every remaining moment to the fullest.
We might have not have cancer or a life-threatening disease, but aren’t we all terminally ill? Whether it’s in six months or sixty years, we are all destined to die sooner or later. What if we all lived our today’s to the fullest? What if we all resolved to make the most of every hour, to have that mindset to do the things we would one day reminisce about on our deathbeds?
What I’m most afraid of is that I would one day find myself at the end of my life, looking back and thinking what did I do with it? I don’t want to lose sight of the things that count, the moments defined in the quiet or seemingly small things, the memories shared with loved ones. I don’t want to chase the things that pass with the wind. (I hate to keep relating things to film, but it’s kind of like the final scene in American Beauty where Kevin Spacey’s character–right before he dies–looks back at his life and has an epiphany about the things that really mattered.)
This is the wisdom and wealth I have been asking for from God. In return, He has granted me the perspective that allows me to enjoy every meal, appreciate every interaction, and cherish every moment that I get to do what I love to do. Truly, in this I am rich, and I could not ask for more.
If you are blessed to go to rest tonight and rise again tomorrow, make sure to stamp carpe diem on the day you’ve been given.