It was early January, and my stomach was grumbling at me. It had grown used to all the extra food I had been eating during the holidays and wasn’t happy that I had gone back to my usual diet. “Hey!”, it yelled. “Where is my extra serving of turkey? I want another glass of eggnog! How about some more Christmas cookies and peanut butter candy?”
While I tried to ignore the hunger pangs my back was complaining as well from all the extra work I had made it do over Christmas. The horrible arctic cold snap had caused our water meter to break so I had to haul water from my daughter’s house for 4 days over the Christmas weekend. My back hadn’t quite gotten over this and was still sore and achy. It made me miss those early teenage years when I could eat whatever I wanted and never gain an ounce. I could also jog 2 miles, swim all day, lift weights in the afternoon and never have a sore muscle in my body.
“Why is it that by the time we learn to really live and love in this life our bodies are already on the decline?”,I thought. I would have enjoyed my earlier years so much more if I knew then what I know now and cherished my good health, energy, and youth instead of taking them for granted. As soon as I thought this, however, a wise little voice whispered in my mind. “You can’t enjoy today by missing yesterday. You have to live in the NOW. God only gives us one day at a time. It is up to us to fill them with love and live them with joy.” I thanked God for that reminder, rubbed my sore back until it felt better, then took pleasure in eating my simple bowl of morning oatmeal. I knew too that no matter how many more years I get in this life each day of them is a gift from God, achy body, hungry tummy, and all.
Don’t let your own body aches and tummy grumbles get you down then. Live fully each day. Love fully each day. Life here on this world is short, but the love we create here is eternal.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV)
Joseph J. Mazzella