Posted in Family, fear, friends, Grace, gratitude, life, loving others, priorities, Scripture, sovereignty of God, thankful, travel, Trials

Don’t Wait

Then Jesus told him, “Hurry and do what you’re going to do.” John 13:27

Who would have known? Sometimes a change of plans can be bigger than we think.  As you might remember through several Grits stories, my wife Judy and I have made a couple of trips down to Ft. Myers and Marathon Key, Florida.  We had a great time.  We landed in Ft. Myers, rented a Mustang convertible, and then drove to the Keys.  After several days, we drove back to Ft. Myers and stayed at a really nice place called, “Lover’s Key.”  It overlooked a beautiful large bay and was just a few blocks from the beach.  We ate some incredible seafood at a couple of incredible restaurants.  Well, the bottom line is we had such a good time we knew we had to visit again.

This year, early in the year, we laid plans to do just that…visit again. We originally set the time for around Labor Day weekend but later, because of the crowds, changed it to September 8-17. We booked a few days at Marathon Key, a few days at Lover’s Key, and the Mustang…well, that wasn’t going to happen.  Prices for rental cars, Mustang or not, had just about tripled.  Oh well, we could at least roll down the window.  We were excited…anticipating a repeat of last year.  And then…things went crazy with the airlines and the economy, and we knew we would have to cancel…and we did.

What we didn’t know, what we couldn’t know was a powerful hurricane named Ian was going to sweep into the Gulf of Mexico and literally destroy Ft. Myers.  Just eleven days after our planned dates, Ft. Myers as we knew it was gone.  The wonderful restaurants, the beautiful beaches at Ft. Myers and Sanibel Island—all gone.  The truth is it will eventually recover but it will be years and years and years and still yet there will be scars. And here’s what I now wonder.

What if, what if we had known that this beautiful place was going to be swept away would we have made a greater effort to go?  If we had just known that the time we had planned might be the last time…would we have made a greater effort?  Honesty, would money, would price have mattered?  And the answer is—no. I honestly believe we would have made every effort to visit.  Knowing it was going to be perhaps the last time would have changed our effort and the value of the visit.  But alas, it is too late.

Like I said, it will eventually open back for people like me to visit but the scars of that terrible day in September will linger long after the last road is rebuilt.  And that made me think.  What is there in our lives that we are putting off? What is it in our lives that we think, we figure, we can do later?  What thing are we waiting to say, waiting to do, thinking, believing there will be enough time?  And you know what I know—we don’t know if there will be time or not.  That means, perhaps, just perhaps, we need to say and do what needs to be said and done—now not later.  We shouldn’t and perhaps can’t wait because things can and do change and later might be too late.

I call it my favorite “taken out of context” scripture.  It involves Jesus and Judas.  Jesus knows what Judas is about to do so He tells him, “Hurry and do what you are going to do.”  That whatever is his betrayal of Jesus to the authorities.  Like I said it is terribly taken out of context but still there are those glaring words…hurry and do whatever you are going to do. Judy and I have been talking a lot about our next chapter in life.  We are both getting older, and we keep asking each other…and God, “What’s next?”  Well, we are not privy to all of that, but we do have today…we do have now.  The bottom line is we need to do what we can do now and say what we want to say now for tomorrow may not come.

Do quickly. Don’t wait. Don’t procrastinate. Don’t wish you would have…rather be glad that you did.  Remember, grateful that you did is always so much better than regret.  I’m hoping writing this will spark wisdom in my life. While we don’t know about tomorrow, fortunately we do know Someone who does.  To some He is just God but to some of us He is known as Dearest Daddy and we know and believe that He knows our tomorrows. We also know and believe that “He’s got this.”  Bro. Dewayne