I was in the kitchen cooking, not paying much attention to the TV, which was on the classic movie channel when suddenly a phrase caught my attention and clutched at my heart. I turned around to see what was going on, it was a dad talking to his son about dying and I heard him saying, “Son, you’re gonna miss me when I’m gone.”
Let me share the backstory of why that statement stopped me in the midst of my cooking. It happened a few years ago now, I went into my parent’s room to take some things and as usual I was in a hurry. My daddy said, “Haro, sit with us for a while and talk to me.” I stopped and looked at him leaning forward in his recliner looking up at me and said, “Daddy I would love to but I need to go back downstairs right now.” He smiled as he looked up at me and said, “You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone.”
I can’t tell you the times I have heard that phrase over and over inside of my head and every time I hear it I do exactly what I am doing this minute as I write, I cry. I look back and try to remember what was so pressing that I couldn’t stop and sit for a few minutes when it seemed so important to him and for the life of me I don’t know what it was, it couldn’t have been that important.
There is nothing I can do to bring that moment back and change it, so why dwell on it or let it niggle at my mind? I think the importance of remembering things that we have done that we aren’t happy about is so that while we know we cannot change the past, but we can change our future.
We used to sing a song that said, “Yesterday’s gone and tomorrow never comes, what will you do my friend with your today?”
It’s not that one day, such as New Year’s Eve going into January 1 of a new year makes any more difference than yesterday did to today, but it is a marker, a starting point, like the next day after your birthday which starts the beginning of a new year in your life, no startling revelation, no bells or whistles, but it is a new day, and a new year for real. Maybe today can be that day for you, a time to make some realizations about our lives and what it is that we want from it, what we want to give to it. I am giving you the gift of taking something that I greatly regret and learning a lesson from it for yourself.
Is there something that you greatly regret? You don’t think you can do it? Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me”.
Maybe it’s time to make a change so that today won’t be the yesterday you regret tomorrow.