On March 1st, we had a farewell campfire for Neil Burkholder’s family. It had been quite awhile since I’d sat around a campfire with a group of people. As we sang, I was reminded of other campfires, and the mesmerizing effect a campfire has on the people sitting around it.
It’s completely dark, except for the light of the fire. Everybody stares at the fire, lost in their own world of thought. Nobody seems to want to take their eyes off the fire, as if missing a single flame would be like missing an important goal in a soccer match. They sing songs, or just sit there quietly, always watching the fire. Every once in awhile, someone might throw a Styrofoam cup in the fire, and the mesmerized faces light up for a short while as black smoke rises towards our poor, holey ozone layer.
At this past campfire, I was trying to think about what it is exactly that makes a campfire this way. The comfortable warmth? The endless repetition of flames? The smoke in the face, perhaps? I think that I feel this way about campfires because I always think about the “uniqueness” of the situation. You will never have the same campfire twice. There might be similar ones, but there will be differences. People will be gone, new people will be there, kids will be bigger, adults will be older, or spruce will be burning instead of maple.
A song that my family often sings around a campfire is called “We Have This Moment.” It talks about treasuring each moment and enjoying it to the fullest. Once a moment has passed, you will never get it back. The only thing that remains is the memories. “Yesterday’s gone and tomorrow may never come.” Something about that song makes me feel a little bit sad every time I sing it. “Don’t wait for tomorrow to look back and wish for today.” What if I haven’t appreciated the wonderful people that God has put in my life like I should have? What if by tomorrow, it’s too late? It just might be… but “We have this moment today.”
Yes, we do. You do. You have the opportunity today to show the wonderful people in your life just how much you love them. So take it. Don’t wait for tomorrow. It might not come. Don’t wait until they’re gone or very far away to realize just how awesome they are. Thank God for them, and show them how much they mean to you every day. You have this moment… today.