Thursday, 10 July 2008

Life and Death

I did something today which I didn’t expect to do yesterday – we were out for a nice meal with our good friends Tim and Valerie Downes at the new Loch Fyne restaurant in Wokingham which opened for business last week when Tim mentioned that he’d heard that one of the guys who belonged to the Queens Head Golf Society who I used to play with, had died recently; Tim said he thought the funeral was today (Thursday).

I called the Crematorium first thing this morning – yes, it was scheduled for 11.15am.

So I decided to go – really just to pay my respects to someone I knew, not really a close friend but someone who I’d shared a few nice relaxing hours with on a golf course or two! I hadn’t seen him for a while but then again with our lifestyle between the UK and Australia, that wasn’t too surprising.

It’s strange isn’t it? You sit there among the deceased’s close family and friends, listening to tributes and how folks remembered him – I related to all that was said about Clive.

Although it wasn’t a religious ceremony (which I always think is rather sad, but then that’s just me I guess) the ‘service’ to celebrate Clive’s life was nonetheless quite moving – he was 68 and had retired of course but he apparently discovered that he had cancer a couple of years or so ago.

He never made a fuss but would apparently talk about it if you asked him – but he didn’t look for sympathy, that really wasn’t Clive’s style. He bore his situation with great courage and dignity and stayed at home with his family and friends around him until the end, which sadly came quite quickly last week.

The ‘Order of Service’ handout says the occasion was ‘A Celebration of the Life of Clive Hackett’ and that’s just what this morning was really all about; I saw no tears, just pride from his grown-up sons and daughter to their Dad, now departed this life – Clive’s wife and his elderly Mum and Dad were there too along with many, many friends who, like me were privileged to know him.

It’s at times like these when life stops you in your tracks and you pause to reflect on your own mortal existence – your clock and mine are ticking, there’s no doubt about that, is there?

So I was reminded this morning - SEIZE THE MOMENT and live your life to the full: experience and enjoy everything that life has to offer, the good and yes, the not so good too – it’s all part of the deal. Never wish for things or days gone by and past because for better or worse, they are consigned to history; take a moment if you will and click on 'Right Now' in the right hand column of my Blog which I always find uplifting.

Right now, remind yourself of the blessings and the gift of life, the precious things you cherish, your family and friendships and everything else that makes you happy.

LIVE FOR TODAY yes, but aim for the best in the future because today, tomorrow, everything and anything is possible.

And when that day comes, as the finger of fate has already written, when your Maker calls you, no looking back with regrets, no ‘I wish I had done/seen this or that’, just know that you LIVED YOUR LIFE, left some nice memories with people you loved and met and gave it your best shot – that’s all, nothing more.