Op/Ed By Michael Vaughn
This week’s column has been devoted to someone I had only a very brief relationship with.
We would see each other at the YMCA, and greet each other while lifting weights.
However, I found out when I went to the gym on Monday, he had been found dead.
This was very sad to me, as I had just seen him last Wednesday, and found out he died on Thursday.
I was told he died of a heart attack, which had seemed to be the result of shoveling snow.
Afterward, I thought about him throughout the day.
And, as I pondered what had happened to him, three thoughts stood out to me, which I am going to share with you in my column today.
The first thought I had was, you never know when your last day will be.
The fact is, everyone will have a day before our last day.
So, the question to ask is, if you knew today would be your last day on earth, what would you do?
I’m not sure what he had been thinking about that Wednesday, but that was the last Wednesday he had on earth.
God has been good to us, and, even with all that has been going on in our society, we should think about the purpose of God in our lives.
We cannot just sit around, and complain, and blame everyone for what we have been going through.
You never know if this will be your last day here.
And, while he may not have known last Wednesday would be his last Wednesday, still, he was at the gym.
He had been doing something good for himself, and bringing a bright light to those with whom he came into contact.
He definitely lived out loud.
And, that’s a fact which brings me to my second thought.
You never know when you will see someone for the last time.
Therefore, it would behoove us to do all we can right now.
What you have to share, or say, to someone may be the last thing they get to hear, or see.
What you bring to them may be the thing that brings them joy, and it may not have cost you anything.
How much better would our world be, if we all would just slow down a little bit, and notice each other?
How much better would our world be if we would notice when someone may be sad, or when someone may need a word of encouragement?
How much better would things be if we would notice when someone may want to be recognized for doing something they believed to be significant?
A good start would be getting to know the names of the people you may interact with each day.
Knowing people’s names would be the first step toward giving people meaning in our lives, and therefore valuing each one of them.
I think it would be hard to hate someone, or be mean to them, if you valued them.
This man seemed to value those with whom he came into contact.
There had been one man he seemed to joke with constantly, but, in the midst of the joking, he shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with him.
He valued the man so much; he wanted to do what he could in order to impact his eternal state.
Finally, the last thought I had was, we have to be mindful of what our bodies have been saying to us.
I do not know anything about this man’s health condition, or what he may have been feeling that day.
However, there indeed seems to have been some extra exertion on his part while shoveling, and, his body may have been providing some warning signs.
Therefore, we must pay attention to the signs of our bodies, and not ignore them.
It could be the difference between life and death.
There have been many issues upon which we, as people, have disagreed, and will likely continue to debate until the end of time.
However, one thing we all have in common is, we all have a date with death.
So, the question is, will you be prepared for that date?
Do not take your lives for granted; we are here on earth for a purpose.
Maximize your God-given purpose, and help someone else along the way.
Live passionately, and do everything you can to add value to someone else’s life.
And, don’t leave the earth without Jesus in your life!
This man I worked out with seemed to not have taken his life for granted, because, even in death, he has impacted my life!
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