Sometimes life is like the sound of those crickets. It's happening all around us, but we're so used to the sounds and rhythms that we get lulled into a stupor, moving along but not really thinking about what it all means.
Then something happens that yanks us out of our stupor and makes us think about life and what really matters.
This week I was served two major jolts that have me sitting here tonight counting my blessings and asking myself, "What if it were me?" And I feel an ache of sorrow for others even as I feel guiltily grateful that this time, it isn't me.
A woman I worked with in Young Women's in Idaho lost her husband this week. He wasn't much older than us and he left behind five children, none of whom are married yet. Only one still lives at home with her mother. Soon this woman not much different in age than me, will be an empty nester with no husband to share that empty nest with. No father will stand by their mother when each of those five children gets married. When those children have families of their own, their children won't know their grandfather.
Then today my cousin and her children were in a terrible car accident that left two of her children seriously injured. Her 5-year old son may not survive. My cousin is spending tonight hoping she'll be able to hold and hug and snuggle her little boy again.
My heart is breaking for both of these families and I can't help but imagine if I were one of these women--losing my husband or possibly saying goodbye to one of my children.
Tomorrow is Father's Day. In one city there will be a family with no father to shower with gifts. In a city just a few hours away, a father will spend the day beside his critically injured children.
Mixed with my prayers for these two families will be my gratitude that I've been blessed with my father long enough for him to know all my children, long enough for him to set an unwavering example to my family of testimony of Christ and service to others. I'll be grateful that my children have a father who loves them and takes them to church, a father who plays with them and prays for them.
Even as I hope and pray for these families, I also hope and pray that I'll not allow myself to be lulled into a state of complacency. I hope I'll remember how fragile life is and that I'll be grateful every day for those that matter most.
Happy Father's Day to my dad and my husband.