How Getting Hit By A Semi Gave Me Eternal Perspective
This last week my family and I were hit by a semi while traveling to a restaurant to grab a bite to eat. We were completely stopped, waiting for a break in oncoming traffic, so we could turn left into the parking lot. While we were waiting, a semi truck smashed into the back of our van, whipping our necks back, and smashing out our back window. Aside from some sore necks and backs, everyone seems to be alright.
While I was sitting in the nearby parking lot waiting for the claims guy to come, I started to get afraid. My neck and back were hurting, and it felt eerily similar to how I felt fourteen years ago after a drunk driver hit and flipped a friend of mine’s truck that I was a passenger in.
I started remembering all the hassle of chronic back pain, multiple treatments, and the limited opportunities that injury had brought. My mind began watching it play out again, only this time with a wife and seven kids experiencing the same problems.
As I thought back fourteen years ago, and I began working through my fears, I started to gain some prospective.
I realized that the way I viewed things then, through my nineteen year old eyes, was quite different from how I view things now, through my almost thirty four year old eyes. When that first accident happened, I was single with no kids, no career, and very few life experiences.
I think the biggest difference I noticed, was that back then life moved so much slower, and seemed so much longer.
As I thought about dealing with my back over the last fourteen years and the prospect of future back pain, I began to think that it’s not so bad. And you know why I thought that?
Because life moves so fast now, and seems so much shorter.
In a couple months I’m going to have a teenager. In no time my kids will be driving. In a heartbeat my kids will be married and out of the house. And before I know it, Gina and I will be old and gray.
The truth is, we’ll be home soon.
This life is a vanishing mist. (James 4:14)
And it hit me. I can endure a little pain for a few more decades.
This life isn’t what matters. It’s eternity that counts.
The older I get, the faster time goes. More and more I’m realizing how short this life really is and I’m asking myself the question. What am I doing, investing in, and focusing on that will last for eternity?
How much of my life is spent going after pleasures and rewards that will end in this life?
How much of my life is being spent going after pleasures and rewards that will last forever?
I leave you with a poem that Leonard Ravenhill quoted:
“Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last. And when I am dying, how happy I’ll be, if the lamp of my life has been burned out for Thee.”
About Josh Christophersen
Josh is a software engineer, church planter, and blogger with a passion for helping people do their life well. He lives in KC with his wife and 7 kids.