What I Learned From Kennis

Today is the day.

Thirteen years have come and gone.

Seems like a lifetime ago, and yet not.

I am more aware.

Aware of what truly matters….

and for that I am thankful.

Even in our darkest moments, our worst times, God is there.

He is there.

**************************************************

I wrote this post last year…..and I thought I’d share it again.

Because it matters…..

Live Like You Were Dying

Tim McGraw at @ #WMT2010

Image by liljhawkgirl via Flickr

Without appearing to be overly morbid, I’d like to state the obvious.

 

I’m dying.

 

Yep, you read that correctly.

 

And, so are you.

 

Let that sink in a minute.

 

None of us are going to make it out of this life, alive. Well, unless Jesus comes back before then…but, other than that…yep, we’re all going to die.

 

It could be this evening, or maybe next week. It might be before Christmas…or it could be 75 years from now, in your sleep. None of us knows when, but we know it will happen.

 

That really is one of the few sure things we can know, in this otherwise chaotic adventure we call life.

 

Now, with all that said, and you my readers, probably scratching your head and wondering if I’ve totally flipped out talking this way….

 

A few days ago, a friend of mine on Facebook, wrote a status using Tim McGraw‘s lyrics of Live Like You Were Dying.  If you’ve never heard the song you should take a listen. For being a secular song, it is still very good, and has a lesson in it that we could and should learn. A lesson in living. You can check out the lyrics here.  Anyway, as one thing usually leads to another, it got me thinking about life and death and all the in between stuff. I realize that most people do not want to hear this kind of talk. It makes them uncomfortable, nervous, or down right angry. That’s okay. One doesn’t have to read my blog entries if one wishes not to do so. My goal is not to make people  uncomfortable, but to make them think.

I remember when my first husband died. The day we got the diagnosis was a beautiful, June day. When we got out of bed that morning we didn’t know that it would be the beginning of the end.  Isn’t that true about a lot of things in life? He was 32 when he was diagnosed with a terminal heart condition. He lived for just 1 year and 4 months after his diagnosis. Now, if you’d have known my husband, he was not what I would have called a philosopher, or a theologian. He was a good ol’ boy, born and raised in the south, loved NASCAR, and Tennessee football. He should have gone to culinary school, he loved to cook, and he was excellent at picking out just the right gifts for birthdays and Christmas. All that aside, some of the most profound things that he ever said to me in our nearly 10 years together, were during those months between his diagnosis and his death.

As the months went on, and he became weaker, his words took on new meaning. Words that still echo back to me 11 years later.

I remember…. “Dawn, come sit with me. Cleaning can wait….I won’t be here forever.”  He knew he was dying. His perspective had changed. He realized relationships were what was important in this life. (Lesson #1)

Or, the scripture he wrote in his own hand, a verse that was close to his heart….found in 1 Corinthians 2:9. “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.”  I still pull that verse out on occasion and read it. I look at his handwriting and think to myself, he’s there now.  He sees what God prepared for him. He had a personal relationship with the Lord. (Lesson #2)

And the final words that he said to me, as he lay in his hospital bed…”I love you.”  These words were followed by a hug. That was the last time I ever felt my husband’s arms around me. Isn’t that what most of us want to hear? That we are loved? (Lesson #3) God was so good to me that hard day. He gave me the gift of Kennis’ words.

As much as I tell this story about my late husband, and the emotion of it all floods back to me, it is not he that showed me the greatest love. It was not my husband’s love that saved me. Nor, is it he that has gone to prepare a place for me. You see, the One that wrote me a love letter….it is He that I long to meet after I take my last breath in this world. It is Jesus that will make Heaven, home.

 

Jesus said, ” I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies…”  John 11:25  NIV

 

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in me (Jesus)……I am going to prepare a place for you….I will come back and take you to be with me.”  John 14: 1-3

 

And so….

 

live like you are dying…

 

Because you are.

 

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One thought on “What I Learned From Kennis

  1. Dawn, this is incredible. I want to re-post this on my blog. It is one of the most awesome, tender, loving pieces I have ever read of yours. I choked up as I read it. Wonderful. Beautiful. Touching. Very touching.

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