That’s how many days I have been living and breathing on this earth.
32 years and 6 months I have been alive, and it wasn’t until this past week that I came to realize I have been doing it all wrong.
They say that you don’t know what you have, until it is gone.
Sadly many of us learned that the hard way last Wednesday when we learned of the passing of one of the most amazing women I have ever had the pleasure of calling friend. It’s not that I ever took Angela for granted, because believe me, I never did. I knew what a treasure her friendship was while she was here on this earth. But still I realize that I didn’t truly appreciate what she taught me. What she brought to my life and the lives of so many others, until she was gone.
The girl with 3 hearts…..man she knew what life was all about. It was evident in her celebration of life Monday. For over 2 hours friends and family stood and spoke of the LEGACY that Angela leaves behind. They spoke of her kindness, her goodness, her friendship, her hair (because let’s face it, it was always fabulous), they spoke of moments shared, her amazing talents and her joy. But more than anything else yesterday, people talked about her FAITH. Her faith when faced with challenges many of us can’t even begin to imagine.
Angela lived a purposeful life. Her one purpose? Leading a life that was pleasing to God. She did all things for His glory and she always did it with a smile on her face. With all the curveballs life threw her way, she remained faithful in the plan God had for her life. She took comfort in life’s simple pleasures and saw the beauty in all things. As Angela’s husband shared Monday that, she never did anything half way. She felt like anything worth doing, was doing it right.
So many friends stood and shared about Angela being their best friend and what their friendship meant to them. And it made me smile, because that was so Angela. Everyone in that room could have referred to her as their best friend and they would have been 100% correct. She placed weight on relationships. They meant something to her and she was intentional with all those she came in contact with.
She was the kind of friend that text at just the right time to check in on you. The one that would ask often how she could be praying for you. The friend that would drop by Starbucks because she thought you could use a pick me up. Or create one of her beautiful canvases to turn a bad day back around. She was the best gift giver. Everything from her perfectly handwritten card to the thought and the meaning behind her gifts. Everything so purposeful and full of love. Just like her.
So in this last week as I mourned the loss of my friend, I thought about those 11,838 days. Those days are a gift, a gift that I have been taking for granted. If this week has taught me anything, it’s that nobody is promised tomorrow. I have to start truly appreciating the life I have been given. Now before it is too late. Some days it is just plain hard. You let the weight of the world get you down and focus on the things that you don’t have rather than the blessings that you do. And in the end that is all they are, things.
I want to start placing weight on the things that matter. I want to be purposeful in all that I do. I want to see the beauty in the world, and live a life pleasing to God. I want to live a life like Angela’s.
I WANT TO COUNT IT ALL JOY.
You will be greatly missed by many dear friend. Thank you for loving us all the way that you did. Thank you for the legacy you have left behind, we promise to make you proud.