There are several passages in scripture that remind us that life is short and fleeting. Jesus taught that our lives are like the flower of the grass, here today and gone tomorrow. Our brief lives are like the morning fog burning up in the rays of the breaking sun.
I am never more reminded of this than when I loose someone close to me. Sunday, such a thing happened. My mother in law, Theodorita Sanchez, breathed her last breath and we lost immediate access to her gentle goodness and Godliness.
What really struck me after the initial wave of emotion and grief was the son of my niece. She had given birth to him just six weeks ago and already he seemed to me to be more toddler than newborn. He was looking around alert and attentive.
Just hours before I had witnessed the life of my wife’s mother drain from her, leaving her empty, and now the child before me was growing stronger and full of life.
Observing this contrast reminds me that the days of our lives matter. Our choices are ours and they leave a legacy. The Lord speaks to this when He says, “but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.”
You see Tita and her husband Joe were people who loved each other and their children. They expected their children to do what was right and to live well. Did every one of their children live perfect lives? Sadly, they were human and fell short like all us.
Most of their children remained married to one spouse raising children who are on tract to do the same. All working hard to care for their families, like Joe and Tita. Not wealthy people, but stable contributors to their communities. People of faith on the whole who love God and each other.
I have been blessed to be a part of this family for soon to be twenty eight years. It is my hope to leave a wonderful legacy like the Mom I gained in marriage.
Tita was neither famous or wealthy in terms of her bank account. The wealth she had was from how she served her family and her community. She served, with love, the residents of the Good Samaritan Village, a local senior care facility. She invested herself in the children of Socorro as volunteer grandmother for almost two decades.
She was very kind and gentle, a true peacemaker with a strong will. She would attend the weekly bible study I taught, telling me that she learned so much. However, she would faithfully go to the San Miguel Catholic church every week, never missing a service until just the last few weeks.
Even when she lived with us the last six months, she would sit on the front row of my church and listen to me preach and then ask my son to take her to the Magdalena Catholic church that started their services right after I finished (I tried to finish on time too).
There are few people who can have such an impact on our lives. Tita was one of those people in my life. She always encouraged me to be a better man and she passed that on to my wife who does the same thing.
The thirty years I knew her passed very quickly. It seems only yesterday that my wife introduced us. Yet, like the morning fog she is gone, but also like the fog my life has been watered by hers.
Life is important, how we live it is important. We should consider what we leave behind, a blessing or a curse.