Okay, I’m not trying to start 2010 on a somber note, but what if I told you that today was going to be your last one; as in being alive. What would your reaction be? You might give me an incredulous look, chuckle a bit, and then go on about your business, never giving my statement another thought.
But what if GOD told you that this day was gonna be your last one?
Would your plans for the day change? Would His statement change not just what you were going to do, but how you were going to do it? Would you try to make your last day “count” more than all the days that came before it? I wonder…
If you been around myself and my wife Jackie for any appreciable amount of time, you know that every time I walk out the door to run an errand…every time I say goodbye…every time I’m going to be apart from her, I give her a kiss. EVERY time. If we’re in the salon, it may not be anything more than a peck on the cheek, but I always kiss her goodbye. And each night before we go to sleep? You guessed it; a goodnight kiss.
You may be laughing at the notion of what I just told you, and that’s okay; most people do. Until I explain why…
The world is full of eternal optimists (the glass is half full) and eternal pessimists (the glass is half empty). Somewhere in the middle of these two groups are the eternal realists (just look at the amount of water in the glass).
Most people consider me to be the eternal optimist, but I think of myself as a bit if an anomaly; a freak, if you will. I expect to be awesome every day, and I can count the days that I wasn’t awesome in 2009 on one hand. But I also know that striving for awesome each day comes with a price. Oh, there are days when I’d just as soon settle for having a bad day, which would require a lot less effort, but “I” won’t let “me” settle for that. I know that the good stuff doesn’t always come easy.
And I realize that while I’m enjoying my life, enjoying being me, more than I ever have before, it could be over in the blink of an eye. You see, we’re not promised that we’ll have a tomorrow. For that matter, we’re not promised that we’ll have the next five minutes…
So, the optimist in me looks for the good in every situation, and finds something to be grateful for every day, and loves being alive, and always tries to find a reason to smile, and knows that God is gonna give me everything that I need in life…
While the realist in me knows that life is a precious gift that cannot be taken for granted, and that this day may be the last one that God has planned for me.
I give Jackie a kiss before I walk out the door, knowing that it may be the last one. And I try to live each day to the fullest. And I look for the best, even on the worst days. And I try to make every day count; for myself, for Jackie and our family, for our salon, and most importantly, for God.
There’s a piece of paper taped to the inside of the front counter in our hair salon that reads:
I don’t know how many members of our team take notice of the message on the paper; it’s been there for a couple of years now. Quite honestly, the primary reason that I put it there originally was for me, more so than for any other member of our team. I found that I was focusing more on the annoyances and “irritants” in our salon than on all the other good things that were happening around us, and in me. Consequently, my life, and everything in it had started “going South.”
From that point forward, I made a commitment to appreciate each day, and everything that I had, and to give not 75, or 85, or even 95% of what I had in me, but 100%. Every day. The results have been…well, they’ve been humbling.
Okay, back to my original questions: What if God told you that today was going to be your last day? Would you do things differently? Would you try to make it count?
For many of us, with the new year comes a new set of “resolutions”; ways to make ourselves better, or to look better, or to feel better. Many of us attack these resolutions with fierce determination and make them a permanent part of our lives. Others start out the year with good intentions, but for one or more reasons abandon our quests at some point down the road.
If you’re wanting to make a resolution for this year, but are undecided, may I suggest one for you?
Pretend that this is your last day. NO, not with a sense of impending doom or urgency! Just appreciate it for what it is, and make it, whatever it is, count! Go for it! Reach for it! Believe it! Savor it! Have fun with it! Relish it.
You see, when you give every day your best, you feel better about yourself. And you feel better about the world around you, and the people in it. And you feel better about life. And life becomes, well, it becomes fun, even when it’s hard.
Just make it count. For God. For those you love. For yourself.
See you next week.