This I Believe

Elizabeth - Birmingham, Alabama
Entered on January 25, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: carpe diem

With so much going on in my busy life, I often forget to appreciate the life that God has blessed me with. I can become so consumed by my schedule and responsibilities. But I have recently learned that life is short and can suddenly be taken away. I must appreciate every moment and breath that God has given me. This has been a difficult lesson for me to learn because I am such a perfectionist. My mind is always so focused on some homework assignment or busy rehearsal schedule that I can forget to look around and take note of the everyday blessings God has given me. I sometimes forget to appreciate my family, friends, and comforts that I have. I learned that I must appreciate every moment I have to live through an experience I had with a friend last year.

Chelsea and I met and became good friends five years ago when we started dancing together at Dance South. One night about a year ago she called me crying hysterically telling me that her best friend Hannah had been killed in a car accident. That afternoon Hannah had been riding in a car with lots of her friends, and her seatbelt was not buckled. The car was crossing a railroad track when a train came and knocked the car out of its path. Hannah was thrown out of the car and was killed, at only fourteen years old. Chelsea called me with this news two hours afterward, and I had trouble grasping that this really could happen. It was very difficult for me to know how to comfort her and help her through this when my sixteen year old mind had not put a lot of thought into death, but I did the best I could.

Chelsea now wears a locket that belonged to Hannah, engraved with her initials HGY. Every time I see Chelsea and her locket it reminds me of the important lesson I learned from this experience. This provided a wake up call for me. It made me realize that I had been too focused on the things of this earth: grades, clothes, or theatre and dancing, and it was time for me to be looking at what was more important. I needed to be appreciating my redeeming Savior, my compassionate family, and my enthusiastic friends. Most importantly, I needed to be living my life in a way that would show others the love of Christ so that they might be drawn to the Lord themselves. I believe that life is not long enough for me to waste time worrying about the things of this world. It is short, so I must make the most out of every opportunity that I have. Through this experience, I’ll always remember that I am not promised another day, so I must do everything I can to make sure that this day is worth it.