What if you only had 4 days left to live?
Today I’m going to talk about something that really knocks me off my feet some days, something that shakes me and my whole core of a human being so hard that it leaves me without any breath and completely bummed out. But, at the same time it leaves me more motivated to be better and make the most of each and every day.
It was June 2014 when I woke up to the notifications of friends posting “Rest In Peace” messages on one of my good high school friends’ Facebook wall. Surely this must be a joke, it can’t be real I thought. But with every minute that past in bed that morning another message expressing someone’s sadness and grief for a great friend lost came through.
I was shocked to have learned that my friend had died in a car accident the night before. As I was lying in bed I scrolled around on his Facebook profile when I came across a few posts that he made just a few days earlier. In these posts you could see that he still had so much hope and so many dreams for the future.
As I was lying there I zoned out for a bit on the thought of this: Just 4 days earlier there was this person with so much potential, love and hope. So many goals and dreams, friends and family, places to see… and now there is… nothing!
Just an empty room… A mother with a broken heart, a father with tears in his eyes, a brother that cannot sleep and so many friends in disbelief.
There was no way my friend could’ve known that there was only 4 days left on his clock. Sheesh… Let that sink in for a second. Four days earlier when he made that status update, commented on someone’s picture and shared a funny video clip he was totally unaware that he only had 4 days left on this planet. All of us, his friends and family, were totally unaware.
After that day I’ve had this same experience a couple of times where I will find myself on someone else’s Facebook profile (who has sadly passed away) scrolling through their old pictures and posts, zoning out on the shocking reality that just 4 days ago they did not know their time was almost up.
Have you ever done that? Because man it hits hard!
It feels like death has been getting closer and closer to home in recent years. Some days I’m terrified by the idea of death. I’m terrified that my last day will come and I would’ve missed out on all the opportunities and chances I didn’t take.
Opportunities and chances to influence someone else’s life positively.
The only thing that give me peace and comfort is my faith. As a Christian man I believe that Jesus Christ has already conquered death and the day I accepted him into my heart I received his salvation. This is the only thing that works for me and this is how I choose to live my life.
Here are a few versus out of the Word of God that gives me comfort about death:
Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.
For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-14
After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.
Therefore encourage one another with these words.
1 Thessalonians 4:17-18
The righteous perish, and no one takes it to heart; the devout are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.
Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death.
If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.
A good name is better than fine perfume, and the day of death better than the day of birth.
Being human it is easy to have fear, fear usually leads to anxiety and anxiety steals our precious time, time from the adventure we could be having. But, what if you knew you only had 4 days left to live? How would you live your life? How would you treat other people? What will you do? What will you leave behind?
Let that sink in for a moment… Because THIS can be YOU today!
Here are a few things that I will do:
- Wave to the pretty girl in traffic
- Smile at more strangers
- Take more flyers from the guy standing at the traffic light
- Compliment the cashier lady at Pick & Pay
- Buy the car guard a Coke
- Call my mom(family) and tell her I love her
- Go to the beach and catch a wave
- Pet a dog
- Forgive someone
- Apologize to someone
- Read a book and definitely read my Bible
- Have some delicious curry at an Indian restaurant
- Laugh with a friend
- Have a conversation with my dad
- Drink a beer with my brother
- Make my mom laugh
- Buy someone flowers
- Write a love letter
- Dance with someone
- Pay for somebody’s groceries
- Motivate and inspire a younger person
- Let my friends know I appreciate them
There is a lot you can add to this list but I’m sure you get the idea. I want to encourage you to go and think about what you just read here. What if you knew you only had 4 day’s left to live?
Now, I want to challenge you to make your own list of positive things you would do and try do one of those things each day! Even if it is a small silly thing like waving at the girl in traffic. Because that can be a little personal victory for you and it’s all about those little victories in life that keeps you motivated and going.
Make the most of your day today and be the change you want to see in this world.
In loving memory of Walter van der Walt & Ryan Coetzee.