"When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy." Psalm 94:19 (NIV)
How are your days going? Are you accomplishing what you wish to? Are you feeling so rushed that you don't have time to appreciate the smaller things? Are you thankful for what you are experiencing or do you wish you could either rewind or speed up the clock to get to a time that is more pleasant?
I have a good reason for asking these questions. According to a study by the Centers for Disease Control in 2019, approximately 2,854,838 people die per year in the United States. That works out to over 7,800 deaths per day. This represents hugs that were never given, birthdays that were never celebrated, holidays that weren't observed, graduates that never received a diploma, "I love you's" that were never spoken and last visits that were never made.
Overwhelming thoughts? Truly. As we approach Memorial Day, my mind is on those service men and women who never returned home to their families. They all had people they loved and that loved them. They all had plans for when their times of service were over. Many carried pictures of loved ones in their pockets and would pull them out to remind them of how much there was to live for. Yet, sadly, in any military conflict or war, there are those who make the ultimate sacrifice.
Perhaps someone in your family lost his or her life in battle. I know I am just one person, but I would like to let you know how much I appreciate what your loved one gave to enable this country to maintain its freedom. To say that I am grateful is far beyond an understatement. I know that those who are left behind suffer great grief and I pray for God's consolation to be with you.
Life is fleeting and, sadly, there are reminders of that around us everyday. Just by turning on the evening news we are reminded of that fact. This is why it is so important that we remember that each day we open our eyes is a new gift from the Lord. Each breath we take should be a reminder that He has a plan for each of us.
Psalm 118:24 tells us, "This is the day that the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it." On this day, as on every other day that we are gifted with, let us rejoice and find reasons to praise. As other people enter our lives, whether for a moment or a lifetime, let's love them with hearts that have been touched by His perfect love. In order to make the most of the time we have on earth, we need to keep our focus on things above, even though we may be experiencing pain, heartache or troubles in this earthly realm.
I pray that you will be enveloped in God's holy arms and that your eyes will be opened to the wonders that He has created for our enjoyment. No matter what you are going through, please remember that He loved you enough to send His Son for you. Life, as we know it now, is not forever. So, while we still have time, let's focus on that which is most important and allow Him to walk us through whatever difficulties we may have. God bless.