I was sitting in my car at Walgreens in front of a Red Box waiting for my sons to decide on a movie. While I was waiting, the owner of a car parked next to me ran to her car from the store, jumped behind the wheel, smiled at me, sat there for a a little while doing something on her phone, then drove away. A few moments later, another car drove up. The driver got out, also smiled at me, went in the store, and quickly came out.
Seeing that parking space and all the other spaces become empty then quickly become occupied with a new driver…in…out…in…out…made me think of people I loved and lost in general and people the world loved and lost in 2016, specifically. They were born, they made a seemingly brief connection with their loved ones and strangers (much like the brief smile to me of each new occupant), they died, and somewhere a child was born filling the gap in the universe left by their departure or another person in some way came to fill the gap left by them.
People talk about the numerous stars who died in 2016, and there was even a running joke of our protecting stars still living by encasing them in some human bubble of protection, but in the end, those who died did what they were born to do–then left, leaving the world much different than how it was before they were born. They made an indelible impact!
So, as one who has hope in God’s purposefulness for each individual’s cycle of life, I just want to encourage you going into 2017.
Your space is still occupied. You are still able to connect with others and complete your indelible mark–even if that mark is just on a few people in your neighborhood, one person on your job, or one member of your family. 2017 is another opportunity God has graced you with to be who you were created to be–not who others think you should be or who you believe you ought to be because of others’ perceptions of you.
Be you. And, that’s enough.