For soon it is gone and we fly away.
Like many Americans on April 15, I watched with horror as the events at the Boston Marathon unfolded. My immediate interest was in learning if an acquaintance who was running in the marathon had escaped harm. As the nation awaited more details of the bombing, news outlets filled the hours replaying videos of the first moments of the blasts.
One video in particular struck me. At the moment the first blast ripped through the crowd, the area was engulfed in thick, white smoke. As people ran from--and toward--the carnage, a small bunch of yellow balloons slipped from the chaos and floated toward heaven.
A wave of emotion rose in my throat. Some child had only moments before been laughing, playing, eating goodies, and clinging with pride to those balloons. Then the laughter was gone, swept away in the violence that killed and maimed and stole away innocence forever.
Today I learned that at least nine of the victims of the terrorist attack were children. This morning the name of eight-year-old Martin Richard was released. Martin slipped into eternity in the same blast that critically injured his mother and sister.
"I just can't get a handle on it," neighbor Jack Cunningham said of the boy's death. "In an instant, life changes."
In an instant.
Life is precious. It's a gift, and it's too short to be squandered. Cherish it and fill it with all the joy you can find. Make every moment count for eternity.
You never know what the next instant will bring.
What keeps us from living life to its very fullest? How does this dishonor the Giver of Life? In what ways can we make better choices in order to live in joy, no matter what our days bring? What can you change today so that if the next instant brings eternity, you will be ready?
The Associated Press