This past week my family and I will laid my uncle to rest, Bishop F. E Perry. He lived a great life of 85 years. As a leader in the Body of Christ and our city, he received more accolades than I can write in this post, and he will be missed by many.
When I heard of his passing it hurt my heart. Not just for me, but for my father, his brother, and for Bishop’s family. Then I began to walk towards my wife to tell her the news, and as I did, I remembered when I was in college, and I lost my other uncle, Reverend William T. Sawyer, another great man of the gospel, and a leader truly before his time. I remember all the hurt and sadness. We knew uncle was ill but the hurt doesn’t lessen. In this case, Bishop Perry’s transition was a surprise, but I will say, he left this life doing what he did for the majority of his life, preaching the Word of God.
While at the cemetery when we laid my other uncle to rest, I ran to my father in tears. I didn’t cry during the entire funeral, but the thought of losing my dad hit me hard. I pleaded with him not to leave me. I begged, “Daddy, don’t leave me, please don’t leave me!” I didn’t want to feel all the pain felt ‘around’ me surrounding my uncle’s passing ‘in’ me if my dad left me.
Then, I began to think about Joseph, and how I’m basically 40 years older than him. I began to think about Briana, and hoped I created good memories with her. I began to think of how we try to do so much for our kids, but neglect to give them the time they really want and need. I began to think life can’t get in the way of time with our children.
Time should work for us, not against us, and as dads and parents we should not let life get in the way of quality time with our families and those we love.
I’m not the kid in college anymore holding on to my dad crying and pleading with him to stay with us. I’m a dad who understands we all have our time to leave this earth. I understand now the words Benjamin Franklin spoke when he said, “Do you love life? Then don’t squander time, for that’s the stuff life is made of.”
Let’s love life and not squander time with the ones we love.