Ann Farabee: The journey
Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 28, 2018
Man that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble. Job 14:1
I don’t think anyone will be picking that as their favorite Bible verse, do you?
Several years ago, I stood by my sister’s side in the funeral home chapel, as she spoke at the memorial service of our younger brother.
She began to share about their last conversation, which was shortly before his death. His speech had become labored, and as she sat in a chair beside his hospital bed, he leaned in toward her and she leaned in toward him. He whispered these words, “I’ve had a pretty good life.”
My tears began to flow as she told this story, because I knew how very difficult his life had been.
She then explained about his automobile accident at age 21 that led to months of hospitalization, followed by the amputation of his leg two years later. He struggled with addiction, financial problems, and disability. His days were full of trouble, and they had also been few.
But, during their conversation in the waning hours of his life, he didn’t talk about his troubles. Instead, he shared simple everyday memories – family, waiting on the snow cone truck to stop by, vacations, orange sherbet, his cat sleeping on his chest, the UNC Tarheels…
As my sister recounted the conversation, there were smiles and laughter.
And I began to smile through those tears, and to realize that, yes, it had been a pretty good life.
As I walked into my home after the service ended, I was greeted by much wonderful food from many wonderful friends. Some of God’s beautiful flowers had been sent to my home for me to enjoy. And… I wallowed in the goodness of God as I spent the next few hours loving on – and being loved by – my family.
His memories had not been of his troubles – as huge as those troubles had been.
His memories were of his journey with those he loved – and the God who loved him – by his side.
The really big things – ended up not being the really big things.
The really little things – ended up being the really big things.
My brother, who was known more as a man of few words, taught me a lesson that day that continually helps put my life in perspective when my days seem filled with trouble.
This one thing I know: I’ve had a pretty good life.
We all have.
Yes, our life is of few days and full of trouble, BUT GOD…. sure has been good.
Ann is a speaker and teacher. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or annfarabee.com