This will be a morbid post for some, but for me, it’s a reality check.
On many of my trips back home to Winchester, Kentucky I take a few minutes to privately visit the graves of family members. I stop in front of each grave and either silently or audibly say a few thoughts of gratitude for that person. It’s a good opportunity to relive fond memories and anticipate future ones.
After a little while of visiting the graves of grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, a nephew, a brother I never met and a sister lost way too soon, I walk over to a nearby area with no graves (pictured here). It has no graves yet because it contains the plots my wife and I purchased 30 years ago for ourselves.
While standing in the section where I will be buried, my thoughts change from the past to the future. I hope I have decades left to work and play and love and make a difference. But I am not guaranteed another day on this earth. Neither are you.
Some avoid thinking about such a reality. Some respond by living hedonistic lives grabbing what they can before they’re forced to let it go. I choose to stand on that empty ground and pray for wisdom in how to make a positive difference in the lives of my family, friends, work and church with however much time I am granted in the future. I pray that I put aside past sins and bad choices that interfered with making as big a difference in the past as I might have made otherwise.
I’m long past the time of life when I’m trying to be successful as most would define success. It’s time to be significant instead, focusing on the positive difference I can make in the world and in the lives of others.
Leap year lesson #127 is You don’t have forever to make a difference. So you’d better now start if you haven’t already.