On this particular Wednesday night, if you had asked me what my plans were for the evening, I would have told you I was going to my church’s youth worship service, then going back home to watch the Olympic swimming finals with my family. And, if you had asked me if I take my life for granted, I would have told you I don’t.
I went to Wednesday night worship like I do every week. I saw some of my closest friends, sang along with the band and listened to our speaker. We concluded around 7:30pm and I began driving home via the same route as every week. On this particular night, though, I had a slightly different experience.
When I am afraid, I will trust in You.
– Psalm 56:3 NIV
As I approached the last (and longest) stop light before my house, I turned on my left signal and continued enjoying some country music while waiting for the green light. I perked up in my seat when the colors changed, looked left, then right and began to ease into the intersection. For some reason, I felt the need to check to my right once again before pulling into the second lane of traffic. As I turned to look, I saw a truck heading my way, and he didn’t seem to be slowing down. I slammed on the brakes as the truck ran through the red light. I was completely in shock after nearly getting slammed in the middle of the highway. Tears began streaming down my face. All I could do was thank God for His protection.
After arriving home safely, I sat on my front porch replaying the memory over and over again in my head. A vast amount of things could have gone wrong in just a few short seconds. My life could have been flipped upside down in the blink of an eye. I was so thankful the Lord revealed His presence in my life at that very moment. If I would have pulled out just two seconds earlier, this would be a totally different story.
I pray every event throughout my life will give Him all the glory.
I’ll definitely admit I was terrified in that intersection. My heart was about to beat out of my chest, but what brought me the most comfort was the assurance of Who holds my life. I have placed all my hope and trust in Jesus Christ, and I pray every event throughout my life will give Him all the glory. Even in times of fear, God is in control.
Today, I give thanks to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, for all circumstances, for this is God’s will for me in Jesus Christ.
– 1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV (paraphrased)
That night I realized how short life truly is. Life is too short to live for anyone other than Jesus Christ. Life is too short not to offer grace and forgiveness to others. Life is too short not to spread the hope and love of Christ throughout your community. We wake up every morning expecting to wake up again the next morning, but we don’t know when we will take our last breath. We don’t know the last time we will eat our favorite food, or the last time we will watch our favorite movie. Those are simple things I take for granted far too often.
If you had asked me a couple of months ago if I take my life for granted, I would have told you I don’t, but the truth is, I did take my life for granted. I had not offered grace and forgiveness every chance given. I had not always spoken with words of kindness. I had not always looked at situations through His eyes of love. Life is too short to be stuck in the ways of the world. Life is too short not to offer grace and forgiveness. Life is too short not to live a life of love. Life is too short to live for myself instead of living for my Savior. Life is too short to keep quiet about what Jesus Christ has done in my life.
Allie Paige Thornton is a student at Brookland-Cayce High School where she is a cheerleader and member of the Lady Bearcats soccer team. She is also an active member of her church youth group at Trinity Baptist in Cayce, SC.