Today has been a day filled with many emotions.
I learned that a loved brother-in-law returned home to his Heavenly Father this morning. He discovered only three weeks ago that he had a type of cancer. Not feeling ill, he and his wife went with a daughter to New York state, the other side of the country from him, to settle business for his brother. He returned home in time to feel sick. The hospital sent him home to hospice care about three days ago. The family was told he would not recover. This morning, he moved from this life to the next, leaving the rest of us behind.
We live about five hours away and knew his life was near to ending. We planned to head up to visit him one last time after church on Sunday. I had purposely left the Internet closed on my computer this morning to get some editing done on my next book. When I opened it, I discovered this good man had lost the battle.
After calling his sister, and sharing condolences and sorrow with her, my husband needed to do something, go somewhere, so we went for a ride to our local National Conservation Area, Red Rock Canyon. This is a beautiful loop drive, with stops for hikes and overlooks. Today, however, we just drove through, slowly, enjoying the beautiful mountains, rocks, trees, cactus, and plants. I even saw a rabbit run across the road. As we drove through this beautiful area, my phone played music praising God for his wonders through our radio. It filled us with joy.
God, in His majesty, filled us with joy and understanding of His plans for us. Each of us will leave this world at some point in our future. Some, like my brother-in-law, will find that his future no longer includes the pains and sorrows of this earth. Many more of us will continue through this life for many days and years.
Some of us will drive through the beauty of the earth and miss it, swallowed up in our own sorrows and griefs. Others, like my father, will look at the desolate desert and find a flower, the darkening sky and see hope for moisture, or the loss of loved ones and see blessings and hope for that person.
On days like today, when it would be easy to see only the clouds and the sorrows, I am grateful to hear beautiful music and see colorful mountains and growing plants, reminding me that life will continue. What is important is what I do with it.
What will you do with your life? Seek the shadows or look for the shining sun behind the clouds? What sorrows do you face today?