It has been a crazy few weeks and I was already feeling totally overwhelmed by all I needed to get done when I found out my Great Uncle Mel Dalton had passed away and I would need to travel down to Moab with my parents to attend his funeral. As stressed as I was about all I had to get done I cannot tell you how grateful I ended up being that I took time to go. During the service one of his children read a passage my Great Uncle had written in his journal while he was still living and it was exactly the reminder that I needed to hear – here is what he’d written:
“The way we spend our time determines the quality of our lives. It’s more precious than gold. It’s irreplaceable. Things wasted or lost can be recovered but Time Cannot.
Most everyone I’ve known, at the end, wanted a little more time. Time to do the things they wanted to do. Time to do the things they needed to do. The Lord has commanded “thou shalt not idle away thy time”. When we do something that doesn’t turn out as we had planned you can almost always put it right. Get over it and learn from it.
But once you miss out on something it is gone. Our children grow up, our friends move away and loves ones pass on. While we’re here it’s so easy to take your family and friends for granted, until the day when they are gone and then our thoughts are “what if “and “if only”.
I want you, my family, to relish this life. Find joy in this journey. Share your love with families and friends. One day, much sooner than you think, each of you will run out of tomorrows. Don’t put off what is most important. This I know, we have less time remaining today than we had yesterday.”
Oh how I needed that reminder. And how powerful it was hearing it from someone whose time in this life had now come to an end. I am so grateful for the perspective he provided me this weekend.
Another amazing thing was because my Uncle was a WWII veteran an American Flag was draped over his casket. Then at his graveside his fellow veterans carefully folded the flag with complete respect and precision and they presented the flag to his son. Then they did a 21-Gun Salute followed by the playing of Taps on the bugle. I cannot adequately put into words the Spirit we all felt as we watched this and it solidified the respect I have for our veterans. I am so grateful for their valor, patriotism, and the sacrifices they have made to afford me the freedoms I enjoy.
Time is precious. Don’t waste it on things that don’t matter. Don’t take the time with your loved ones for granted. Live a life of purpose.
Here are some amazing photos from the funeral:
~Amy Rees Anderson (read Amy’s new book “What AWESOME Looks Like: How To Excel In Business & Life” )