Monday, October 17, 2011

In an Instant~

This morning started like any other morning.  My alarm jolted me out of my dreams and then out of my cozy bed as out into the world I stepped.

At work, this day started like any other morning, too.  Emails to answers, projects to complete and phones to answer. 

In fact, it was answering a phone call that turned this ordinary day, upside down.

"Stacy," the voice on the other end of the line sounded urgent," is the Pastor in?"

"Yes, just a moment please."

I put the phone on hold and walked the short distance down the hall to the front offices, then informed the pastor about the caller waiting on line 1.

I returned to my desk, opened a another email,  then looked up as the pastor entered my office.

"It was a massive heart attack.  I'm headed to the hospital."

Minutes later, another phone call.  This one from the Pastor.

"He didn't survive.  He's gone."

In a matter of moments, a member of our church was gone.  One moment, he was on the golf course, taking in this beautiful fall day and breathing in life.  The next,  fallen onto the grass to breathe of this life no more.




In an instant.

A moment.

Suddenly, nothing about my own life felt ordinary anymore. 

As I hung up the phone, I distinctly remembering feeling my lungs inhale and then exhale as I took my next breath.  I felt the pounding of my heart, as each beat pumped blood through my veins. I felt the blinking of my eyes as tears welled up and overflowed.  I felt my stomach, a sea of emotion. 

As I unconsciously pulled the collar of my shirt up close around my neck, I smelled the "scent of my husband" still lingering on my shirt, a precious reminder of  our morning embrace. 

Looking straight ahead at nothing in particular, I spotted a photo of my sister, her precious little boy and me.  Walking through a mall one day while we were both vacationing at my mother's home, we had spotted one of those fun little photo booths, looked at each other with that twinkle in our eyes and dove in.  The photo brought new tears.

As I sat in my office, my little cubicle of the world, I was suddenly aware of life,

 of being alive.



Emails, projects, to-dos, bills, the argument I had with my husband the day before, my dirty house...

none of it mattered anymore.

NONE. OF. IT.

I was alive.  I had been blessed with one more minute of life.  Possibly one more hour or one more day or one more week or one more year.

What a gift.

What a privilege.

And shamefully, regretfully, what a waste...all the days before when I was simply going through the motions, existing, and doing, and completing my list, but not really living.

As I sat in my office, I thought about my life.  I thought about how many minutes had been wasted on

piddly bickering,

 thankless complaining,

endless worrying,

mindless living. 



What if today was my last day?

What if that would have been me?

Not another opportunity to feel the warmth of the sun,

to hear the wind whistling through the trees,

 to taste the sweetness of honey,

 to laugh until it hurt,

to dance when no one was watching or maybe even if they were,

to experience life,

 ALL OF IT~

What if that phone call would have been about me?

Am I satisfied with how I have lived my life?

Am I ok with the way I have chosen to spend the minutes I have been so graciously given?

AND.............

Am I content to keep living this way?


NO.


I.


AM.


NOT.

I don't want this day to end like any other ordinary day.

I don't want my life to end like just another ordinary life.

When my end comes,
when I breathe my last breath,

 I want my life to have been lived to the full, 

abundant,
overflowing with LIFE~


Teach us how short our lives really are

so that we may be wise.
~ Psalm 90:12, NCV



Linking up with Jen at:





and Shanda at:



and Tracy at:



and Emily at:

16 comments:

  1. Stacy:

    Powerful post. We never know when we will draw our last breath. Life is truly a vapor.

    I had such a busy weekend that I forgot about your Saturday link-up. I hope to join you this week.

    Blessings,
    Joan

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  2. Thank you for this moving post. It is early in the morning with you and posting in my mind I start this Tuesday in Holland.

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  3. these times that give us perspective. . . so difficult.
    great post, great writing, even in the midst of a difficult situation.

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  4. Precious perspective. A heart filled with gratitude is a beautiful thing. :)

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  5. Wow Stacy - what a challenge. I also don't want to take my last breath with regrets for things I could have lived differently
    God bless
    Tracy

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  6. Yes, yes... such wonderful words. I know of loss all to well as we just went through the loss of our daughter Izabella. We never know how long we have with those we love.

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  7. A couple of weeks ago, something similar had me thinking similar thoughts. Life is so precious, and none of us knows how much time we have. It is not a gift to be wasted.

    Thank you for sharing your heart. I pray you are blessed.

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  8. This is a blessed reminder of how each and every moment is a blessing, and one to thank God for. We can make a difference by the way we "glow" with His grace and in the way we share the moment with others! :)

    My loving thoughts and prayers are with your church member's family and friends during this time of sorrow and loss.

    Blessings and hugs,
    Denise

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  9. Stacy, this is a reminder of the blink our lives our. Oh, that we might live that way...despite all of those daily irritants that rob us of the blessing of each moment! Iam sorry for the loss of this presious member of the Body for your church.
    I want to say also the pictures are both beautiful and poignant for the post. Beautiful.
    Dawn

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  10. Hi Stacy, found your blog via Tracy's Winsome Wednesday. Pleasure to met you and to have discovered this poignant post. It makes me stop and reexamine my life and my priorities.

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  11. wow those moments have a way of centering us on what is truly important

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  12. These are such important moments. May we learn to truly experience each moment with His life in it.

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  13. Stacy, As I read your post I felt myself slow down. Thank you, Janae

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  14. Life is precious and so often discarded. Thanks for taking the time to remind me to cherish my life. I'm alive. I have an opportunity to make a difference for Christ. I'm ALIVE.

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  15. oh wow stacy. you don't know how i needed this... what a powerful reminder. thank you. and i'm so very sorry for your loss...

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  16. I received this message just under 3 months ago when my mother, didn't wake one morning. Young, she was. Yes Lord teach us how short our lives really are. Cherishing each breath.

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Thank you for leaving a "heartprint" of your own.