We are now attending Woodlands Church East, which is a congregation of about 1200 people and is the second campus of Fellowship of the Woodlands. This Lent period Pastor Kerry Shook and his wife Chris are leading the congregation through a study based on their book (or maybe the book was based on their study and now we’re all doing the study too) One Month to Live.
When this first came up, I was not too thrilled. I have a friend whose husband was given a year to live and they did live that year as if it were his last; he quit his job and they traveled with their boys. But in reality, the likelihood that I have only a month to live is slim. And living as if that were all I had to live would be foolish.
Seriously, if I had a month to live would I keep working? No, I wouldn’t, even though I love my jobs. But I wouldn’t spend the time on my jobs. However, I can’t just quit my jobs because then I wouldn’t have a job in two months or five months or a year when I actually wanted one again.
If I had a month to live, would I worry about the yard and getting the carpet cleaned? Probably not. I would not spend three hours of my day getting my carpet cleaned tomorrow. But I am going to do that because I’m not dying in a month and we’re having a challenge group for the book at our house on Thursday.
If I had a month to live, I wouldn’t worry about buying new clothes. I might get my hair cut so I’d look as good as I could or I might leave it alone in case the haircut really messed it up. I might exercise to spend time with R or to be healthier in the last little bit, but I wouldn’t care about my weight.
There is so much that is just silly about the idea.
There are things that are legitimate too, though. If you are a workaholic and you think of only having one more month, you might spend more time with your family. If you are an alcoholic, you might give it up. If you are not speaking to someone you love, you might reconcile.
I guess the reason my first reaction is that it is silly is that I have my life fairly worked out. My mother has lost her mind, but there is no one in my family from whom I am estranged. I have friends and they know I love them and I keep in touch with them. I have a job I enjoy. I spend time with the boys and R. My life is good.
However, I want to be in this with all my heart. I don’t think we are supposed to start the thing until our challenge group, but R started yesterday. Since he did, I feel like I ought to as well.
List 5 things youâ€™d change about your life if you knew you only had 30 days to live.
I would quit my job. (See above.)
I would spend time with my parents, even if my mother is crazy. (I will do this soon.)
I would spend Saturday with my sister and my nephew and nieces. (Now that depends on R and what he wants to do, but if I only had a month left, I would do this.)
I would spend a lot of time with the boys driving me around, since they need to learn and we would be together then. (I will probably be doing this anyway.)
I would clean out the closets, especially in the teen room, and give the books that no one in the family except me is interested in away so that R wouldn’t have to do it after I was gone. (I don’t want to do this if I’m not dying because then I won’t have any books to teach SF or CC jobs with.)
Describe how you would like your life to be different at the end of reading this book.
I suppose I could say that I would like my life to be more purposeful, that is always true.
Tell at least on other person that you are reading this book. Ask them to circle the calendar day one month from now and to ask you how your life has changed.
I haven’t done this. I guess I could tell Angie or Paula or Amy or Beverly or Kim. But I don’t know that it is really necessary/useful/comfortable. (Hey, BevG, you will probably read about this.)
If I were to die by Easter, I want it known that I have wonderful friends, a great family, the best sons on the planet, and the sexiest, funniest, most loving husband I have ever even heard of.