A young man within our social circle recently died in a car accident - it had something to do with falling through ice.
I imagine that most of you, by the time you read this, will already be aware of the passing of Paul Sanders, our summer friend who spent the rest of his time in his home in Ontario. A fearless pro-lifer, snappy jimbay player, and ever the life of the party: I can't believe he's gone. He had barely begun to live.
Other people knew him better, so I'll leave it to them to eulogize him properly. But his unexpected passing is a firm reminder to me: any of us could go, at any time. This life is not to be squandered; it is to be treasured and lived to the full, and we are to exhaust ourselves for the glory of God and for the furtherance of his will.
If the bridge I drive on every day suddenly collapses and I find myself pressed between the weight of the flowing river and a mass of twisted metal and concrete with no way out, I want to be able to find a moment of peace and steel myself for the passing from this world into the next. I want to know that my salvation is assured, and that I haven't left it up to guesswork and probabilities and simply "being a good person."
Thank you Paul, for your friendship here on Earth. Thank you for giving your life for the Kingdom. Thank you for being a willing instrument in the hands of God to strengthen those of us who remain.
I'll meet you under the Tree of Life, buddy.