Do we take some tools with us? What about a jacket, will it be cold in Jamaica? Johnny’s seasoning? How about a long sleeve shirt? A tie? Do I really need a tie?

For the last couple of weeks my thoughts have been consumed with things. What items will help us to live comfortably in a new place? What sentimental things can we bring to remind us of home? Being married to an amazing planner I also have to think of what things we need to have organized and in place for the next two years (I’m realizing every day that I could not have done this on my own. I would have been a wreck trying to prepare for a journey like this). But in the midst of the storm of gathering supplies and packing I’m realizing something more important than high-tech fabrics, finances, and my iPad. I’m starting to truly value and appreciate each moment spent with loved ones and it never seems to be enough. I won’t miss things – I will miss relationships.

It sounds cheesy and all to easy of a realization. The truth is that we often live as if our time is unlimited, until we realize it is limited and then scramble to make more time. It’s never enough.

I remember when one of my best friends was preparing to move to Indonesia with his wife. We got together for one last board game and beer night before he left and I remember asking him, “Knowing you’ll be gone for awhile, how do you spend these last couple of days with people? How do you say all the things you want to say or do the things that could somehow make up for time not spent together in the coming years?”

His reply was simple, “You don’t. You just enjoy the times you have together now.”

Today was an amazing day of celebrating friendship. We had an opportunity to share what we will be up to with our Church family, then had a celebration/going-away party, and then had dinner with family. It was great to see our friends (and thinking of those that couldn’t be there), to hold and play with our friends’ children and wonder how much they will grow in the next couple of years. We were blessed that a friend finished a graveyard shift and then drove three hours, just so he could see us in person and say goodbye. We were overwhelmed by love.

“You just enjoy the times you have together now.”

Now. Not tomorrow. Not in two years. Now.

-J

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