Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Last Time

At night I lay down with my five year old son and watch him go to sleep. For a time I did this only on occasion but later he ask for it every night. I began to think of this as an imposition because there were things that competed for my attention, not to mention the fact that I didn't really want to spend the time it took every night. It occurred to me however that there will come a time when he will be too old for this kind of a routine.

Also, it seems like last week that my little girl was in diapers. She's eight now and as such its been quite a while since I last changed one. This brings to mind that one day for both of my children I took a diaper off of them for the very last time and in so doing a door quietly closed to a part of their childhood; a childhood I'm already grieving over. The time will come when I will lay down with my son and we will look into each other's eyes as he drifts off to sleep; I will get up and go about my evening routine getting ready for bed, and never realize that that was the last time we will ever enjoy that particular routine. This reality really changes many "have to's" in family life to "get to's".

Life has a way of changing our outlook on things. I was driving into the Nashville airport one icy morning and a truck had slid on the ice and overturned right in front of the airport. There was a yellow sheet draped over the driver and I realized that his entire morning was a whole list of "last times" both for him and his family. What ever that family "had to" put up with before, I'd bet they would all love the opportunity to "get to" put up with it again one day.

We make a big deal about some last times such as the last time of being a certain age, or going to school, but I want to realize the small ones too, at least as much as a body can. In so doing I think that some of the mundaneness or unpleasantness of everyday life can more easily be embraced. So the next time one of your children spills his milk, or wakes you up afraid at three in the morning, or you are confronted with some other unpleasantness from a loved one, just remember that it might be the very last time it's ever going to happen. Listen for the door quietly closing and forever separating the way things were for you from the the way things are.


Kristi said...

Well said. My heart hurts and simultaneously wells up with gratitude.

Penless Thoughts said...

So very truly. We never know when we will take our last breath or the last beat of our heart and life and things change rapidly in this day.

Anonymous said...

Good Morning. Now I know what a blog is. I read "The Last Time" and I hope many others read it also. It's actually one of life's lessons. I never forgot what my Mother told me about never leaving a situation or go to sleep at night without resolving my differences as it may be the "last time" I see or speak with that person. Thanks for sharing.

Pat Jenkins said...

AMEN dw, AMEN!!!!

danny wright said...

Thanks for dropping by Pat!

Frasypoo said...

Hi Danny
Very meaningful.
I whine about a lot of things and will remember this post then!

terryd said...

Another Amen. Well said.

Beth said...

Thanks, Danny! Priorities are something that I constantly struggle with; there are so many desires within me (some good, some bad) pressing for attention, people who need the Lord and other things, ministries in need of support, work/school/chores etc. that I often feel overwhelmed. Clearly I need to hear the Lord's voice much more clearly, but will I ever slow down enough to do so?

Debbie said...

Very nice post, makes people think. Too many times we live in the future, rather than in the present.

Debbie Hamilton
Right Truth