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Take Advantage of Today

by | Apr 17, 2018 | Featured-News, South District Newsletter, South District Webpage

The older I get, the more aware I am of how fast time is going by. I’ve heard older adults make similar comments my whole life, and now these the kind of statements that I make! This last week-end reinforced this feeling for me. I spent the week-end in Sierra Vista to take part in Sierra Vista UMC’s 50th anniversary celebration.

I left Sahuarita early in the morning on Saturday to arrive in time for Sierra Vista UMC’s Holy Hotrods Car Show. This was their 3rd annual car show, and so far I have been at all three of them. My current old car is a 1968 Mustang California Special. With my car being the same age as the church, I wanted to make sure that it was there. This was made easier since I haven’t moved it to Sahuarita yet. It has been residing at my mechanic’s house in Hereford, outside of Sierra Vista. I appreciate that some of my friends literally went the extra mile to have my car cleaned up and at the show.

I’m very aware that I was only 3 ½ years old when this Mustang was built, and Sierra Vista UMC was started. It is amazing to me that I now own this Mustang, and my picture is on the wall as one of the past pastors. How has the time gone by so fast?

Saturday evening over 260 people gathered for a formal anniversary dinner. Two of my friends were the masters of ceremony. They had an unique request of me. They wanted me to park outside of the building where we were having the dinner, and rev up the motor. I missed this part, but I believe that they announced that they had just arrived in the Mustang. I had concerns about my Mustang starting at the right time, so I went out in advance to let it idle. When I was given my cue, I started to rev the motor. For added emphasis, a microphone was put down by the exhaust. I’m not sure that this was necessary. As I revved the motor, I set off the alarm on the car next to me. I was so proud!

On Sunday morning I participated in all three of the anniversary worship services. The 7:30 AM service felt early when I was the pastor at Sierra Vista UMC, and it still felt early! Two other past pastors were in attendance, and I was glad that Bishop Bob Hoshibata was able to be a part of the services. I enjoyed getting to see people that I know and love. Many still live in the Sierra Vista area, while others traveled to be a part of the services. In my mind’s eye, though, I saw so many people who were not present. For some, their life’s situations have changed. Many others have died. It is easy to convince ourselves that we will always have time to get together, but that is not true. We need to take advantage of the time that we have right now. Is there someone that we need to call or visit? Is there something that we have always dreamed of doing? Is there an apology that we need to make? Is there someone that we need to let know that we love them? This is the day that we have. We don’t know what tomorrow will bring.

One of my friends (who happens to be my age) just retired from being a pastor. She is looking forward to many things, especially having more time with her grandchildren. Her observation was: “We blink, and life goes by”. Let’s live life to the fullest, appreciating every single day before we blink too many times!

Your brother on the journey, Mark

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Author: Mark Conrad

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