"'Teach us to number our days, that we may present to you a heart of wisdom."
It may come to a surprise to you, but you are living in the good old days. I'm convinced that twenty or thirty years from now most of us will look back and say, "Those were some great times."
Make sure you are enjoying your family and special people in your life. They may not always be there forever. Isn't it ironic how at that moment in that specific time we can always see clearly how chaotic these individuals make our life, but when that moment is gone, we can only see the good in it all.
For me, most of my days are bright. I am always in close proximity of thanking our good Lord every moment of my life. I don't focus any longer on the nuances of life, but rather the stream of blessings God bestows every day.
It's easier if you've had death coming knocking at your door, and you quickly stepped by him. One day it was a beautiful Sunday, and I had decided a canoe trip would be in order. It was a bright and sunny day in January and the weather had reached 70 degrees on the lake here in the south. My son and I had stepped into the canoe and were off paddling across to the deserted island that was a quick jaunt.
Within five minutes we reached our destination. The air was crisp and cool filling my lungs with a much needed breath of energy. We walked along the sand swept shore taking in the swaying of the palms and the brackish smell in the air. Nothing was here but seclusion and an inviting peace of mind. It was over so quickly we decided to paddle around the island.
As we made it around the bend the view was exhilarating. Across the waterway was another island long and inviting, but much too far to take a long excursion. We decide to stay close to the rim and do some exploring off shore. We came upon a low lying bed of shells. Millions of shells, different sizes deep in snowy whites and pink corals were a grasp away to and save for momentous.
We continued our trek and as we rounded the second bend, I noticed the shore line was way too far off. In fact, it was approximately 500 meters. I could barely make out the shore line at that point and trees doted the view. A sick feeling impacted my stomach, and I shook it off thinking I'm being ridiculous. "All you need to do is angle the boat at 45 degrees and make way to shore," I thought. I turned abruptly and told my son and he agreed.
We began to steer closer to shore. We paddled for another five minutes and the boat suddenly flipped. There I found myself in crushing cold water of 50 degrees. Everything slid from the boat including me, and I was capsized under the boat. My eyes opened in frantic instability, and my body began jerking. "What was happening?" I exclaimed. I was beginning to suck in water, and all I could think of was, "This was just plain stupid to be so far off shore." It's amazing when you are slipping away from reality the things you think of. You would think you'd be panic stricken, ready to lose your whits. But I can tell you that is not so. I was scared but at peace wondering why I had done something so plainly stupid. I came to surface, body still jerking, head going under water, and looked at the shore line, in peace, thinking how stupid I was.
At that moment, I realized it was my body that was out of control. I had to stop the jerking or I was going to drown. I quietly went into mediation and forced my jerking moments to subside. That's when I realized my limbs were fading away. I was losing all feeling in my arms and legs. I slowly swam a few feet. Each foot length made it more and more difficult to gain momentum. My blood was protecting my heart and soon would no longer substantiate my long quest in front of me. I was on my way out, I could feel it as my mind began fading.
When all seemed lost, I tread bottom. Apparently the river is six feet in depth at most length and is only trenched in the middle to accommodate the ships that pass. I began to surface water while treading and once my heart was out of the water I could breathe easier.
My son who was a recovering alcoholic had relapsed. He was taking sips of vodka in between paddles and passed out while we were on the lake. Because he was so inebriated, the cold water woke him up abruptly. From there he had an easier fare with his swim to shore due to a deadened nervous system.
Life has a way of looking up afterwards. I remember staring at my window during the rain the next day thanking God continually that I was still here for my younger children. That also began my obsession with affirmations. I spend many minutes each day, since, taking in the small blessings of life knowing God is there always.
I've discovered the more I thank God for what I have, the more God gives me what I don't have. Try it yourself and see. You don't have to beg God for things you need. He is always aware of your needs. Begin today to thank God for who he is and all that he has done for you. Always look on the bright side.