It’s been an interesting week here in southern Germany. In the space of just a few days I learned of the death of three people. One was the mother of a co-worker, the other a neighbor (an American) from down the street, and a third was a former co-worker whom I worked with on countless occasions.
Setting aside the obvious dangers of combat, it’s not often that death touches the members of a military community, especially when the community is tucked away in a major city in a safe country like Germany (and “Danke Schön” to our German hosts, who quite capably tracked and neutralized the most recent threat to Americans in Germany). Military people are, for the most part, very young and have very young families, and the energy you feel on a military base is incredible. I’m positive that it keeps me feeling young and healthy.
Thinking back over my 30+ years of association with the U.S. military — and my entire life, for that matter — I can’t really think of anything like this week ever happening before. The Bible says that man has an appointment with death, and of course that’s just fine — after all, who am I to argue with God? — but sometimes it would be nice to get the schedule a bit ahead of time. But that’s the problem; we will never get that schedule. Never. So it’s up to each of us to love and appreciate each blessing that comes our way every day.
As I pulled into the driveway this evening, my Golden Retriever practically jumped in the car when I got home, “demanding” that I give her something to carry into the house (my ball cap sufficed), my four year old son came running up to me for a hug and to tell me about his second day at his new pre-school, and my 15 month old daughter almost fell out of her mother’s arms as she lunged for me (and “mom” had a pretty nice hug, too). And as I write this, my son is demanding that I watch his every step as he plays a game on his computer (which, of course, was originally dad’s office server) and his sister keeps wanting a different video every 3 minutes (Jay Jay The Jet Plane is her current favorite) as she empties the contents of daddy’s pen holder all over the office floor.
So maybe I don’t get that schedule in advance. It doesn’t really matter because I do get it “just in time” — and the schedule for today says “LIVE”. Enjoy my children who are growing way too fast. Cherish their hugs, their love, their enthusiasm. Ensure that my dear wife knows that I appreciate every little thing she does to ensure that I have a successful career and a good chance at having a successful business.
No, today’s not my appointment with Eternity, so instead of wondering when it will be mine, I choose to live, love, and cherish every last blessing that God sends my way today. In fact, I think I’ll do the same thing tomorrow, and the next day, and the next… and when the day comes for my appointment, I just might do like Hezekiah did and ask for a few more years!
A few congrats are in order before I sign off:
First, happy birthday, big brother. Are you up to a game of basketball yet?
And congrats, David and Merry. Your agenda for tomorrow definitely says “LIVE!”. Enjoy life as you welcome your new son-in-law into the family.
Thanks for listening,