Friday, October 16, 2015

The Problem with Phone Calls

I don't like phone calls. 

Since 1986, when I graduated from medical school, very few of the phone calls I've received have delivered good news. The vast majority of my phone calls have been about patients. Night call can do that. None of those calls were to celebrate a miraculous recovery. Most were because of a problem, and most required some sort of action on my part.

It's no wonder, then, that I avoid the phone like the plague. It has seldom brought good news. 

Today marks four weeks since that pivotal call from Sam. "Jamie's on the floor and I can't get her up." It was an ordinary day like every other ordinary day, but it changed everything. 

I had no idea what that call would mean to our future, nor did Sam. 

I don't guess Jamie knew, either. Sam's call led to a 911 call requesting an ambulance. A call to the referral center requesting transfer. A call to family requesting their presence after a downturn in condition. A call to hospice with another referral. A call to the funeral home.

One call after another, one request after another, all marching in a steady spiral toward an eternal destination. 

There were a few calls, however, that made a difference we won't soon forget. Jamie called out to God, and grace, mercy, and redemption were given. Calls to friends and family for prayer were answered with an outpouring of grace. Sam and I called out to God for strength and peace, and we received it. 

Decades of phone calls have taught me that life can change in an instant. When we least expect it, disaster can strike. A downward spiral from which there is no escape can begin. The doors of eternity can open and someone we love can walk through. 

There's no escaping the inescapable. No avoiding the inevitable.

Trouble will come. Sorrow will overwhelm us. Life will end. Eternity will begin.

Life is precious and fragile. 

Knowing life's brevity should make a difference in how we live, both today and tomorrow. 

Leave nothing undone. No kind word unsaid. No forgiveness withheld. Love without reservation. Give without limit. Obey without hesitation. 

One day, our call will come. We will step into eternity and everything will change. Until then, let us live and love with abandon, as if this day, every day, might be our last.

Behold, I tell you a mystery, we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable and we will all be changed." 1 Corinthians 15: 51-52 kjv

In case you missed any of this week's posts, here are the links: Still a Sinner, How to Have a Flood of God-LoveThe Wonder Girls Close the ParkSoft drinks, snacks, and airplane takeoff, and Yeast in the Flour
The most-read post of the past week: Death is Not the End

#lifeisshort #JesusChrist #eternity #death #eternallife #phone

photo courtesy