My fear was not of death itself,
but a death without meaning.
It seems as if death comes suddenly and unexpectedly for many people.
A “pause” is defined as:
- 1.a temporary stop in action or speech:“she dropped me outside during a brief pause in the rain”synonyms:stop, cessation, break, halt, interruption, check, lull, respite, breathing space, discontinuation, hiatus, gap, interlude, adjournment, suspension, rest, wait, hesitation, letup, breather
Yesterday I saw on Facebook that an old friend was tagged announcing her death. As it was April 1st, I thought at first this was her idea of a joke. Sounds like something she would do. But no…at 42 years old, Lori Anne passed away (surname won’t be used for her family/friend privacy). She had been sick for a couple, but yesterday she did not wake up. Needless to say – everyone who read this headline took a pause…
Lori Anne leaves behind a beautiful little girl, in 1st grade. To my knowledge, Lori raised her as a single mother and the father was not in the picture. She leaves behind a family, and too many friends to list.
My heart broke when I read this. Apparently, so did everyone else’s that knew Lori. She brought sunshine and fun into any room she entered. She was always smiling – no matter what was going on in her life. She always asked how you were, always had positive things to say – she was truly a wonderful person. My heart broke for her little daughter, you can tell they have such a connection. My heart breaks that this little girl will grow up without her mother, and that because she’s so young her memory will fade. I hope and pray that she will end up radiating light, raised in a home where she is loved, that she is nurtured, and that healing comes to her little heart.
Most of all, I am aching in my heart because I don’t know if Lori knew Jesus Christ. I”m aching because I had a chance to witness to her, whether on social media or meeting her for lunch – and I didn’t. So many missed opportunities. I see how Lori would light up a room, and imagine how she could light up a room if she had Christ in her. I hope and I pray that she did come to know Christ – she has such a big and tender heart. Last night it took me about 1.5 hours to go through her Facebook page, reading all the comments family and friends had posted about her.
Leaving behind a legacy – obviously Lori left behind a great legacy. I look at my own life, and I pretty much have no personality. I’m not vibrant, I’m boring. I’m not courageous, I’m weak. Because of Lori’s legacy, I want to change my own life. I want to reach out to others and get outside my comfort zone. I want to be bold, courageous, and evergreen in my faith. I don’t want to be a “wall flower” – I want to be a Lori. When I pass from this earth, I want people to say what a wonderful woman of God that I was. That I reached out and positively affected peoples lives. I want to make a difference, and be that one person that can be relied on, called upon, and cried upon. I want to quit being so selfish with my “me” time (I’m an INTROVERT…and have panic attacks and social anxiety).
– Sigmund Freud, his essay on war & death
I am the same age as Lori. 42 years old. What if I don’t wake tomorrow? What will people say about me? That’s what I want to change. I want to be a better person. I know that Christ is continually working on me, I’m growing in my faith, and pressing forward with what God wants me to do. Lori will be my inspiration. I cannot believe my old friend is gone. I hope and pray that we will meet again.
To all of those in pain: while we cannot change the past, we can certainly impact the future. Cherish those around you. Instead of helping someone out of the store, go further…help them to their car (if they accept), help them unload their groceries, and see them safely inside their car. Say a kind word to the mother with the screaming child – she’s probably feeling stressed and embarrassed. Volunteer your time to a cause or a local school, smile at people you make eye contact with, if you know someone who lives alone (that new person who just moved in, that elderly lady who lives in 3B) – invite them to dinner with your family…you get the idea. Be safe of course…it would be my luck to accidentally invite a serial killer over to my house.
This world needs to be a better place. Only you and I have the power to change that. One foot in front of the other, one thing at a time.
What do you want your legacy to be? And how do you get there?