A close family friend, as healthy as you’d ever imagine, suffered a heart-attack on Thanksgiving morning. He went to bed on November 21st, but did not awake on the 22nd. Survived by his wife and two kids.
My neighbor is in his 40’s and was recently diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. I played basketball with him just a few months before. His diagnosis surprised everybody—including him.
I recently received a phone call on an otherwise normal Tuesday morning that a friend of mine had lost his teenage daughter in an automobile accident the night before. As awful a news as anyone could ever receive.
Then there is the story of my relative, who showed up to work last summer, only to find her workplace being searched by the authorities as they investigated fraud. By the end of the week, she was without work.
And my parents, just yesterday, were in a car accident. Everybody is fine, fortunately. But their automobile was totaled.
Life changes fast. This season of life you are in could end at any time. Everything could change tomorrow.
Of course, tomorrow isn’t necessarily worse than today. It may change for the better.
In early December 2001, my wife walked into our living room to share important news with me, she was pregnant with our first child. My life forever changed that day.
Our best friends down the street received a job promotion that took them back home to Texas. My cousin, simply hanging out with friends one evening was introduced to a girl, who quickly became his girlfriend, and soon became his wife.
And my life changed dramatically for the better on a Saturday morning 10 years ago when my neighbor unexpectedly introduced me to minimalism—a conversation that changed my passion and eventually, my career.
They say the only constant in life is change. They are right.
Sometimes we plan out our lives—our days, our weeks, our years—and everything falls into place. But other times, we make our plans, only to have them upended by circumstances outside of our control.
Either way, the only constant is change. Life never remains the same. Sometimes it changes for the better, sometimes it changes for the worse, but always for something different than today.
I find myself reflecting on that fact this morning as I sit alone at this empty table. My life is good, and peaceful in this moment. My family is happy, and we are all healthy. I have friends I can rely on, extended family I enjoy being with, and our financial needs are being met doing work that I love.
lt is easy, I suppose, to think life will stay this way forever. But that is not the case. Everything could change as early as tomorrow.
This may cause some to worry. But I do not think the best response is to worry about the future. I mean, the change that is coming could be a positive one. Besides, worrying won’t change the future anyway. Change is going to happen whether you worry about it or not.
Instead, I think the best response is to fully appreciate this very moment, because it could change at any time.
If life is good, count your blessings, be thankful, and enjoy the moments—every single one of them. Slow down, take a deep breath, and savor this season as best you can.
If, on the other hand, your life is not in a good place, take heart, because change is coming. As the seasons change, so does life. Value love, faith, and hope. Find peace to accept the things you cannot change and courage to change the things you can. But through it all, remember, this is only a season. Things will change, they always do.
If you can only live one moment at a time, you might as well make it the present. After all, we have no idea how long “today” will last… everything could change as soon as tomorrow.
Darla Youngblood Daily says
This is all so true! First my condolences to all your friends sad news. Very hard especially at Christmas .
I recently had a big change in my life. My surgeon found a nodule covering my thyroid and had to remove both, a parathyroid and a lymph node. A biopsy said there was a 75 percent chance it was cancer . But a miracle happened and it was not cancer! Now I can breathe and eat so much better and just in general feel so much better !
It is good news to hear from any doctors. So many women around me have a diagnosis and breast cancer it is for most . I am thankful for yearly and got my next year booked early because it is usually takes month. If only Alzheimer’s and cancer is no longer a big health … my wish for the next year …that’s for sure .
We moved twenty years ago to a two bedroom condo. Many people we know bought bigger homes. My kids were grown. I wanted a laundry room and two bathrooms or we could have gone smaller. My brother had five bedroo me and three baths and a full basement. My husband and I took early retirement. My brother just retired. He liked to stock up at Costco. He had a walk of paper towels and toilet paper. He bought cat food in a fifty pound sack. I never bought more than one package of toilet paper at a time. I think it’s about comfort. I use rags. I use one bottle of shampoo. I like just what I need.
Very true words! Thank you for the reminder!
The road to freedom, the message to happiness. Good stuff.