By Paula Harrington
A few days ago, a good man left this world. He was one of those people who always had a smile and an encouraging word, regardless of what he was going through.
It was said at his funeral that not only did he show us how to live but he also showed us how to die.
He had been a preacher, Bible class teacher, deacon, and elder. He was one of the most encouraging people that I have ever known.
I had just seen him two weeks ago. It was a Sunday morning after services and even though I knew that he had been sick, his wide smile and positive attitude led me to believe that he was doing much better. He asked how I was and then inquired about each of my children. He teased and laughed and left me feeling better than before.
It was later in the week when I heard that he was not as well that day as he had acted. In fact, he was gravely ill.
Last week, when I heard that he was in the hospital, I decided to go for a visit. However, the daily chores piled high and before I knew it, the week had come and gone. You can imagine my frustration when I received the e-mail that he had passed away.
Don’t you hate it when the plans for one of these days never come to fruition because you didn’t stop to make time for that special moment?
How many times do we intend to:
- visit people in the hospital or nursing home?
- write that card of encouragement?
- make that phone call?
- read our Bible from Genesis to Revelation?
We want to pray more, forgive more, and complain less. We want to be a better parent, spouse, and child. We want to smile when our world is caving in and encourage a brother or sister when we feel more like giving up. Why wait for one of those days? Like that old hymn says, “Oh, why not tonight?”
I’m so thankful that I have known people who have shown me Jesus in the way they have lived and in the way they have died.