Unlike most Americans, we do not make frequent trips to Wal-Mart. Living in the extremely rural area that we do, the closest Wal-Mart is 45-55 minutes away, give or take depending on the number of tractors or slow-moving vehicles you encounter along the way. Since our marketing choices locally are few, we generally make a trip to Wal-Mart once every 4-6 weeks. Neither one of us are big shoppers and we generally put it off as long as we possibly can, which is counterproductive because prolonging the trip makes it that much more work.
Normally I take advantage of the long ride to think about what stops we need to make and the list of items we need to buy, but today was different. Today I found myself unable to concentrate on the things that normally occupy my mind and the focus of my attention shifted to the landscape of the country side, the budding trees, the bright green winter wheat, the sky, the cows and horses. I just sat still and quiet and took in the world around me that sadly I realized I so often take for granted. I marveled how God created it all simply by speaking it into existence and He did so for me and all of mankind to enjoy. And then I thought about how much I would miss it all if suddenly it was gone, how sad I would be if I were told I had but a few days left to take in the beauty of it all before I ceased to exist.
The world we live in today is so precarious and unsettled. Horrible unthinkable things are happening all around us on a daily basis. People are persecuted, tortured, suffer and killed just because….fill in any number of blanks. It seems as though barely a day goes by that we are not told about a friend, neighbor or family member who has been diagnosed with some serious medical issue that has or will forever alter their life or worse. For that matter any number of heartaches afflict people we love seemingly out of nowhere and in a blink of any eye life as they know it is forever changed leaving them longing for things to be “normal” again. It is so easy to let the sorrows of this life harden our hearts and cloud our vision to the beauty and the goodness of the life and world God has given to each and every one of us.
My dad’s favorite song was Louis Armstrong’s version of What A Wonderful World. If you haven’t ever done so, listen to the words of that song or better yet google the words and read them. The words though incredibly simple and sweet are just as true today as they were when they were written. God gives us reminders each and every day about how precious and sweet life is, both ours and that of the ones we love. Today is a gift as is each day and nothing in life is guaranteed. Everything we have, including life is a gift from God and to be cherished and lived fully and joyfully each day choosing to see the good and not the bad. And if we have done that at day’s end we can say to ourselves, What A Wonderful Life, oh yea!
Until we meet here again, I pray God bless and keep your loved ones safe.