Home > Uncategorized > The Gift of a Moment

The Gift of a Moment

I attended a conference last week in San Diego. At the end of it, I was very tired and very ready to come home. I was missing everyone and basically, I just like being home. I traveled overseas for years, and now, I’m making up for it. My thoughts were all about me, my family, what I had to do, what I had missed, March Madness, etc. Flying from the west coast is a long process. I was up and headed to the airport at 4:15am. All joy.

Maybe it was the combination of exhaustion and a mounting to-do list at home that had me swimming in these self-centered thoughts. But while boarding the flight, a rather petite, young woman was boarding what would be a packed flight. She was in the Army, and from her patches, I could tell she was part of the 10th Mountain Division. She was in combat fatigues and carried a huge pack that must have been half her weight.

American Airlines extends every courtesy to men and women on active duty and in uniform. Even with the log jam of people trying to get to their seat, the flight attendant thanked her for her service, and asked where she was going. “Afghanistan” was all she said. You could tell she had just said some very tough goodbyes, and didn’t feel like offering more than that. She didn’t need to. She was going to the far side of the world and in harm’s way. Leaving everyone and everything else behind.

I thought about how it would be months, if not more than a year until she would return home. An eternity to both her and her family. And every day being reminded of the distance and danger. I was taken back by this very brief encounter. What she wouldn’t give to trade places with me, or anyone on the plane. All the press coverage and political debate can cloud the fact that individuals are sacrificing so much of their lives, and even their lives.

All of our lives are surrounded and infiltrated with clutter. Our schedules, concerns, and misplaced priorities can easily blind us and distract us from living every day — this day — to the fullest.
Nothing says it better than this; Ps 90;12 “So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.”

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Categories: Uncategorized
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