Monday, January 31, 2011

Embrace life’s uncertainty

By Theresa Montminy
Chancellor

Understanding life’s uncertainty can lead to a remarkable shift in values and guide us on our journey toward making peace in our world.  Ask anyone who has been given only a short time to live.  Their interest suddenly turns to finding those who are most important to them, and, to sharing the time they have left building memories.

How long do you have left to live?  It’s a sobering question for this sobering reason:  We don’t know the answer.  We can’t know.  Whether we’ve just been given a clear bill of health or diagnosed with a terminal disease, we still don’t know how long we have in this world.  The diagnoses of doctors are always subject to human error.  Furthermore, a perfectly healthy person can be killed in a car accident.  Only God knows the day of our passage out of these earthen vessels. Many people prefer not to consider such questions.  They are too morbid, perhaps, and create a fear-filled soul that disturbs our peace-filled environment.

Far from being a morbid thought . . . understanding the brevity of our earthly life span can bring us a sense of focus like nothing else. We can begin to strive for what is important and forsake whatever isn’t.  We can set our priorities.

Do you want that kind of focus?  Don’t wait for a doctor’s diagnosis.  Go ahead and choose a time.  What length of time would give you a proper perspective and help you to live with the right priorities?  A year? Five years? Six months? You decide. Then go ahead and live as though you have only a year left (or however much time you’ve chosen.)  Assume, for example, that God will take you home one year from today.  Watch your priorities change.  Watch your relationship with God and with others transform.  Begin living in the light of eternity and understand the life God has given you!

2011 can be a year of great joy if we find peace by putting our faith in action . . . together we can impact family, neighborhood and society so that people’s lives are filled with hope!

I welcome your thoughts and comments on how you fill people’s lives with hope by “Making Peace” in our world.  Please address your comments by e-mail to officeofthechancellor@sbdiocese.org.

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