In this life, things aint what they used to be. In fact, they’ll never be what they used to be. Things are–have always been–what they will be.
My life, for instance began as a gleam in my daddy’s eye. That shining life force moved, somehow, into mama’s domain, then emerged nine months later as me. My entrance into this world was really a stretch, like maybe a kid passing through the eye of a needle. But I got through it all right, mama did too, and here I am still kicking, sixty-four years ago.
I remember hearing a special song almost a half-century ago; Joni Mitchell sang, “Something’s lost and something’s gained in living every day,”
Which is so true.
Now the something lost could be something small and insignificant, maybe a coin, or a hat, or a credit card. Or the something lost could be something important and irreplacable, maybe a rare work of art, a diamond ring, or a person dear to you.
In this picture from the year 1997, you see two buildings that no longer exist.
To reflect on the their absence, maybe we could think of it this way: the two are gone, but today one is erected where the missing two once stood.
This is a little bit like life itself. In my case, probably yours too: there were two that stood for awhile, mama and daddy. But now they are gone.
In their absence, I remain, a tower of my own imagination and God’s enabling grace. There I am in 1997 on the right side of the pic.
On the other end of the picture, my nephew Erik stands next to my son. But something tragic has happened. As of yesterday, Erik is gone. Like an early March bud taken by the last frost, he was suddenly taken from us.
But that young man had become a father. So, while he sojourned with us for a while before departing, now two children–a boy and a girl– remain in his absence.
This is the way it has always been for us. Mothers and fathers can procreate and love their children. Children can honor and cherish their parents.
For the children who remain, life as it is now will not be the same as it was for mom and dad. The world is a different place.
But however it turns out for you, I hope you can agree with me: Life is, by God, pretty dam good. Live it while you can because one day it won’t be there for you any more.
You may be one of those stubborn persons, like me, who believe life goes on after death. I know someone who has actually gotten through that whole death thing and lived to tell about it.
As for me and my nephew, I look forward to seeing him again on the other side.