This afternoon I scrolled through my list of recent items on Facebook. One of them was from Pamela Hodges.

“Yes, it is a lie,” she wrote, as a comment to the Jon Acuff blog post she shared, entitled, “The lie we all believe sometimes.

I was casually scrolling through when I saw Pamela’s addition to my feed. But I stopped and scrolled back. Something caught my eye. Something in the excerpt of Jon’s blog post. “People younger than you will die today.”

This morning my brother-in-law died. He is… was… just a handful of years younger than me. The life of a strong, vibrant, self-reliant, drop-anything-to-lend-a-hand kind of guy stolen over the course of less than a year by diffuse systemic scleroderma.

I saw him late yesterday afternoon. A quick visit on my way home from work. He was recovering from surgery earlier that afternoon, and was looking relatively well. He, my sister, and I quickly made plans for another after-work visit on Monday, as I had to dash out to catch my bus.

“See you Monday!” I said as I headed out of his room.

As Jon says, the lie we all sometimes believe is “later.” Sometimes later doesn’t come.



It is hard to believe that already seven years have passed since my friend Mark died suddenly. While my family was out celebrating our wedding anniversary at a Caribou and the attached Great Harvest Bakery, his family watched his life slip quickly away in their kitchen.

Mark lived his life prepared to leave unexpectedly early. A lesson he learned from his father’s early death in similar circumstances.

I cannot say that I have yet learned the lesson from Mark. But I am working on it.