Sometimes we get a gentle reminder that life is fragile and finite. Softly, like the brush of a butterfly's wings, we are reminded that we will not be here forever and while we are here, we need to be thankful for anything and everything, the good and the bad. Sometimes those gentle reminders also show us how one very small incident, something we might consider inconvenient at the time, can change the course of a life.
Yesterday, because I misplaced my keys for a minute at my mother's house, I missed witnessing (or worse yet, being involved) in a horrific car crash. I was only a minute behind the vehicle that rolled on the interstate, but it took 10 minutes to get to where it happened because immediately traffic came to a standstill. As I drew closer, I knew it was bad. People in the opposite direction had pulled over and were getting out of their vehicles to run across the highway.
After passing the scene and saying a prayer for those involved and their family and friends I suddenly realized why I wasn't there when it happened. One little thing that at the time was slightly annoying and inconvenient saved me from something I quite possibly couldn't have processed (and, more frighteningly, couldn't have survived if I'd been hit.) How easily a life was lost. How easily my life could have been involved. I am now thankful for the minor inconvenience of having to look for my keys for less than 60 seconds.
I'm sure there are times we don't realize how the little things change our lives. Your son lost a shoe, your daughter can't find her favorite sweater, your spouse can't remember where their wallet or purse was set down last, the dog won't come in after being let out, etc., etc. These things frustrate us, but what if every one of these happens for a good reason, and we just never see what would have happened otherwise.
Sometimes we get a not so gentle reminder that life is fragile and finite. Hurtfully, like the swipe of a tiger's paw with it's claws out, we are harshly forced to face realities that as humans we try every day to avoid thinking about. We have a major annoyance or horror that changes the course of our life entirely. I am human, so naturally I often wonder about my disappearance and amnesia. Why me? What good could actually come of my family's worry, my kids' hurt hearts, my ex-husband's anger, my friends' confusion and fear?
Just like the things I never experience because of the little things in my life, I may never know. I just have to remember to trust that God sees how my life would have otherwise been and He knows truly what's best for me. My life is where it is now. It is going in a direction that NEVER would have occurred otherwise because I am not the same person I was. The change to my life is so big it's incomprehensible.
Life is fragile and ever so changeable. For that I am thankful.