Leap Year Lesson #62: Life Is Fragile – Handle With Care

Posted: March 2, 2012 in Priorities

There is nothing like an emergency of some sort to remind us how much we take for granted. As I write this, the TV in the background is playing continuous news coverage of the destruction from the many deadly tornadoes that just passed through our area, obliterating stretches of homes and property about 20 miles away from us, killing several people along the way. The news coverage has been constant since I was sent home by my employer early today in anticipation of the storms. The wind is still blowing hard outside, although we are in the clear now from the worst of it.

My wife, dog and I took our usual sheltered places in our basement during the storm and prepared for the worst. We had food, water, flashlights, candles, cell phones and more. We put as many loose outdoor items in the garage as would fit. I kept shoes on and wallet and keys in my pocket just in case.

In such moments you realize how few things in this life you can really protect. One of those tornadoes could have easily come 20 miles south and ripped our house away from us, taking virtually every possession from us. In that moment, all that would have mattered would be life itself.

Those who lost their lives in these past few hours didn’t wake up today thinking it would be their last. I can’t imagine the grief of such sudden loss to family and friends. My heartfelt prayers are with the survivors.

It shouldn’t take such experiences to remind us of the fleeting nature of life, but sometimes it does. We easily get into our routines, pursuing our goals, putting things on our calendar and thinking we have many years before us. Most of the time, that is correct and how we should approach our lives. We can’t live in fear of what might be, sacrificing present and future opportunities because of such fear. At the same time, we need to live mindful of life’s fragility, aware of how little control we have over that, and thankful for each day we have to live and love.

Leap year lesson #62 is Life is fragile – handle with care.

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