A few Americans will live their entire lives and never vote. Many Americans will never marry or have children. Millions of Americans will never serve in the military. Many Americans will never own a house.
There is much about America that not one hundred percent of Americans will share or experience. However, every American will experience death. Many of us will be affected by the loss of a family member before we experience our own death. Death is universal. My father, now deceased, often said "We will not get out of this world alive."
A relative of mine has recently moved in with another relative due to the diagnosis of terminal cancer. His doctor said that his time is short. Over the next few weeks or maybe only few days we will watch and try to help as our loved one becomes weaker and life more difficult. Hospice is involved. When morphine begins to be routinely administered then it won't be long until he succumbs with a final breath and his life will be over.
I have officiated or eulogized between 450-500 funerals in my lifetime, possibly more. In every scenario there was a common thread - life was over for someone.
We are all preoccupied with the present. We have so many concerns and stresses, goals and hopes that we have difficulty numbering our days and grasping that our existence on this planet will only last a few more years or maybe even a few more moments. We are all only one heartbeat from death.
I realize you are not enjoying this column a lot. I'm not enjoying writing it very much. Death is a downer. No pun intended.
For people of faith it's an upper, we believe. Death is saying goodbye to all people and all things as far as this world is concerned. We say goodbye to the spouse, the friend, the children and hobbies such as gardening, recreation, travel and writing. We say goodbye to the world because when death occurs, this world is over.
In view of our upcoming appointment of finality, we should at least know that life is short regardless if you live 100 years. There are numerous centurions in the world. You might make the club but you might not. We should all have a Will and Last Statement that an attorney or you personally have put together. Whatever directives or decisions you want to make must be made before death. You can't direct or control anything after death.
Realize we are only stewards or managers. We talk about my land, my house, my car, and my money. Someone else will own all of this. Nothing we have or think we own is ours forever. Everything is passed on to someone else. You should start practicing now not talking about everything as "mine."
You are only a manager of your millions or of your pennies. Someone soon will have it all.
Seems to me that everyone throughout America and the world would work together better if we realized we are only temporary caretakers of this world and throughout the centuries everything is passed on and on.
Sadly we fight over land, natural resources, strategic power positioning. We fight among ourselves and hate each other.
For years, America has been taunted as the Christian nation.
There is so much hate in America today that we should be ashamed to call ourselves a Christian nation. Prejudice, hate and violence are still ugly realities of what is supposed to be the greatest nation in the world.
The political parties and political figures drag our nation down with constant backbiting and war against each other. All the while many media groups have aligned themselves with political parties and contribute to the national devouring.
Death comes to every individual and sadly history records even death comes to great nations and empires. We die by disease, disaster and design or just do nothing and eventually die anyway. America doesn't have to die. We can have a nation for our children and grandchildren.
We can pass all that we have on to our families and children in hopes that they will preserve this great country. Or, we can fight each other until what we have is simply taken over by China, Russia, Japan or someone who is simply watching us die slowly and intends to be ready to step in and take over.
If every American would wake up before we die, we might save this country from dying with us.
Glenn Mollette is an American columnist and author.