Carpe diem! Seize the day, boys! Make your lives extraordinary!" urged English teacher John Keating in the movie Dead Poets Society.
I like that motto: Carpe diem (a Latin phrase for "seize the day"). It impels me to live each day meaningfully and not waste a single moment. After watching a Hong Kong TV drama recently, I gained an expanded understanding of this phrase. The show portrayed the relationship between two sons in their late thirties and their father. Both young men were "seizing the day" in their careers and relationships. The father was always there for them, either by providing a good meal or by bringing his grandchildren to school. One day he suffered a stroke. To his sons, it seemed so sudden. There had been no prior symptoms, no changes that the sons had noticed. As their father lay in a coma, however, they realized that they had taken their dad for granted. They hadn't been "seizing the day" in their relationship with him.
When we read Ecclesiastes 12:1-5, we're inclined to focus on the reasons to remember our Creator while we're young. We might miss that it describes the deterioration that comes with aging, for our parents (and for us). One day, their legs will start to tremble, their shoulders will stoop, their teeth will stop grinding and their eyes will see dimly (v.3). One day, their energy level will wane. We will no longer see the familiar bounce in their steps or the gusto with which they undertook a task (vv.4-5).
Opportunities to honor our parents are for a limited time only. One day, as the wise King Solomon observed in Ecclesiastes 12:5, they will be "near the grave, [their] everlasting home." If your parents are still living, honor them today. Carpe diem. , Poh Fang Chia, Our Daily Journey
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