Tim Nichols and Craig Wiseman wrote a song titled “Live Like You Were Dying” which was made famous by Country Music Star, Tim McGraw. The song is about a man that finds out he has cancer and starts living his life to the fullest. The first verse asks the question “How’s it hit ya, when you get that kind of news, man what’d ya do?”
The chorus answers:
I went sky divin’,
I went rocky mountain climbin’,
I went 2.7 seconds on a bull named Fu Manchu.
And I loved deeper,
And I spoke sweeter,
And I gave forgiveness I’ve been denying,
And he said someday I hope you get the chance,
To live like you were dyin’.
If I were dying, I would not go sky diving. I would love to climb a mountain though. And bull riding would be so cool!!! But competing in a Tractor Pull contest tops my list for sure! Would I love deeper? Would I speak sweeter? Would I give forgiveness that I have been denying? I want to believe so.
My father passed away from pancreatic cancer in 1998 at the age of 68. He was an amazing man that lived a life of many interests. He loved the theater, collecting art and helping people in need financially. He was always very adamant that his name was never attached to a gift or donation. William John Lesperance was diagnosed in July and died one month later. Just before he passed, his words to me were “I should have gone fishing more.” I responded to him with “dad, you hated fishing.” He answered, “you just don’t get it son, because that is what I taught you. I worked my entire life. You need to learn to enjoy your life.”
Interestingly enough, the next verse of the song is:
And all the sudden goin’ fishing,
Wasn’t such an imposition.
And I went three times that year I lost my dad.
Well I finally read the good book,
And I took a good long hard look at what I’d do
If I could do it all again.
Reality Check! From the minute we are born, we start to die. So why would I need to face a desperate situation to start forgiving or loving more? As the song states, “The Good Book” – John recorded Jesus’s words in the 13th Chapter, “A new commandment I give unto you, That you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” Reality Check #2! Christ commands it. He didn’t suggest it, He commands it! He didn’t say wait until . . . He said do it now.
A close friend from Life Time Fitness has a quote that she uses in her emails. It reads, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” If I change, if I love, if I smile it will become contagious. Christ came and changed history with a small group of followers. He set the example, now it is up to me to follow. I want to start today. Change my pattern, smell the flowers and go fishing.
Take on a challenge that interests you. Ride a Bull named Fu Manchu and Live Like You Were Dying!