Never Assume

31 Jul

“A thousand moments that I had taken for granted — mostly because I had assumed that there would be a thousand more.”  ~ Morgan Matson

Today’s quote is from a site dealing specifically with grief.  We all may have had experiences of the death of family members or friends. We all may have had the same feelings expressed by Matson. We may have taken our relationships for granted thinking that we would have plenty of time with those we had lost.

The readings at Mass this weekend all speak to us about our mortality and the fact that it might come to us sooner than we think.  There are a lot of people who will be quite surprised by their death because they thought they would have more time to prepare.

There’s something about our human nature that makes us uncomfortable thinking about our death or the death of loved ones.  We say that it won’t happen, at least not right away.  We pretend that things are better than they really are.  Then, when death comes, we are “caught” unaware and we struggle with the grief that ensues.

Oftentimes, what fuels that grief is guilt.  I can’t begin to tell you the number of complicated wakes and funerals I have had throughout my years as a priest.  They were often complicated because a family member or friend was feeling very guilty about not being in the deceased’s life.  They would try to make up for it by over-controlling the funeral.  In the process, they placed an incredible amount of stress upon other family members or friends.

Never assume.  That is the title of today’s reflection for very good reason.  Never assume that you will have more time.  Never assume that endings will not come.  Never assume that you will be able to say everything and do everything you want to do if you wait.

Never assume.  Do it today.  Say it today.  Spend time with someone today.  Today is here.  There is no guarantee for tomorrow.  Don’t be one of those who lament and beat themselves up saying, “A thousand moments that I had taken for granted — mostly because I had assumed that there would be a thousand more.”

You may not have a thousand moments more but you have this moment: right here, right now.  Make the best of it!

FAITH ACTION:  Have you put off speaking with someone, telling someone something, or visiting someone?  Remedy that as soon as possible.