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Thursday, October 27, 2011

What About Bob by Tom Pappas

My friend from church, Bob, had his name in the obituaries this morning. Part of the newspaper information made me wonder if there was another person with his not very common name.  The age was right. Seatbelt worn, no alcohol involved - seemed right. But he lives in Lincoln, not the nearby village mentioned in the article. Maybe he moved.  Services at the cemetery, not the church; I wondered about that. The church secretary indicated that it wasn’t “our Bob”.

There is a bit of guilt in being happy for my friend knowing that some other family of his namesake has lost a son, father, brother.  I am relieved, nonetheless. 

I am taken back twelve years when my marriage of 30 years was abruptly ended by an entirely unexpected seizure in the night. My world changed forever in an instant. In the ensuing days, I became acutely aware of one of life’s qualities. God gives us this wonderful, fragile gift and we don’t really own it.

In pondering that reality, I found it appropriate to make a promise to myself to eradicate a certain phrase from my experience. Too many times I would finish an experience or a conversation and wonder to myself, “Why didn’t I  .   .  .?”  It seems as if I were being unnecessarily cautious with what I said and did as well as giving too much weight to my imagined opinions of others.

I don’t for a minute believe God would cause Bob to die so I would get back in touch with this personal pledge. (I have been generally happy with my ability to keep it!) But I do think it’s fair and the right way to honor the life of another to use a sad event to live truly for God.

“Our Bob’s” Facebook page didn’t mention his name being listed in the obits until I wrote on his wall. I wonder how his life or view of life will change because of it?  What moves you to change your perspective?

1 comment:

  1. That's why, everyone should be prepared at all times. Are you prepared when the Lord will take your life today?