What’s Important In This Life

by | Nov 19, 2014 | Love Others

I felt I had been punched in the stomach.

“What am I supposed to do with this news??”

I knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to cry.

I had just been told a wonderful man in our community suddenly passed away the night prior. The thing is, he wasn’t just any man. He was a friend of my mom’s, a friend of our family’s, a friend of mine. He was Mom’s neighbor, and seemed to look after her after Dad passed away. She respected him, and appreciated his friendship.

As did I.

As I stood in the line tonight at the church I attended growing up, waiting to express my condolences to his family, my thoughts took me back to Thursday and the conversation he and I had. I desire to share the details of it with his family, but he said a couple times how much he missed Mom, and what a wonderful neighbor she was.

I agreed with him on both. I miss her, too. And I’ll miss him.

His death was unexpected. A shock to his family. A shock to our community.

But this is reality, isn’t it? This could happen to any one of us, or to any of our loved ones.

We could be gone in an instant. Our loved ones could leave us unexpectedly.

No one likes to be reminded of death, let alone talk about it. But sometimes, that’s what wakes us up. Why does it take a shock to do so? Why do we wait to put life in perspective until the loss of life happens?

I understand you weren’t with me in that line tonight, and you didn’t experience that punch-in-the-stomach feeling earlier this week. But I will venture to guess you know what I’m talking about. You’ve been there. You understand the preciousness of life.

And yet we forget. We get busy. We have too many things to take care of, and we lose our focus on what’s important.

What's important

May we return to what’s important.

May we put life in proper perspective.

May we not take one more day, one more hour, one more moment for granted.

May we voice the words, “I love you,” more often.

May we hug, and live, and laugh like there’s no tomorrow.

May we live with no regrets, and bless others along the way.

Most importantly, may we be ready to meet our Maker, whenever He’s ready to bring us home.

My thoughts are all over the place tonight, but I feel I’m among friends, so I can be transparent with you. Thank you for that.

And where I’m going with this? I guess I really don’t know, except to be prompted to not take life for granted, to live life to the fullest, and to know without a doubt where we’ll be spending eternity.

I’m praying for each of us tonight.

Much love,




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  1. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser

    Julie, I’m so sorry. It”s always a shock and a wrench, and while it’s supposed to be, that knowledge doesn’t make it easier. Nor should it.

    My life was dominated for years by the probability of sudden violent death, and I became used to the idea that one day someone would just be gone. It was just part of the job.

    I did go through a period of trying to savor every moment, but for me, what made the moments precious was precisely their ordinariness. To elevate some of them to the status of a “future treasured memory” drove away their immediate meaning, and diluted their contextual value.

    I have to stress that this was my individual experience,and has been largely informed by the “no past, no future” of Zen (which is not inconsistent with Christianity, a fact which still amazes some people).

    In a way, I look at memories the same way I look at Scripture – they are stories in a certain context. I don’t isolate memories, and I don’t look to verses I like. In both cases, I try to immerse myself in the living story.

    • Julie Lefebure

      Thanks, Andrew. His death was a shock to all of us. I pray God comforts his family in the days to come.

  2. Richard H. Derrick

    Food for thought

    • Julie Lefebure

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing, Richard. Blessings!

  3. Sabra Penley

    Sweet Julie, my heart goes out to you. I’ve felt that punch in the stomach feeling. I too know the pain of loss. Like you said, we all do. It’s a part of life. But it truly does get our focus back on what’s important. Thank you for sharing your heart. Thank you for sharing this message. Praying comfort and peace for you and your friend’s family. Hugs!

    • Julie Lefebure

      Sabra, thank you. He was a wonderful man, and I respected him so. This has prompted me to again, not take one day or one moment for granted. I appreciate your caring, your kindness and your prayers, especially for his family. This was a shock to everyone. God bless you, sweet friend. You are loved!

  4. Anita Ojeda

    Oh, Julie! I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you for the reminder that life is precious and should never be taken for granted. May the Holy Spirit continue to comfort you and your friend’s family.

    • Julie Lefebure

      Thank you, Anita. Deaths like this man’s puts life back in perspective. I appreciate your compassionate heart, and your continued encouragement. May God bless you with His presence today.


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