Sorry I have been a bit m.i.a.....But a lot has been on my mind to the point where all I have been doing is thinking and thinking...a big part of what I have been thinking about is death. I hate to be so morbid on this post but the truth is death is a part of life and the longer you live the more often you will see it.
My oldest memories of my childhood involved going to funerals, most of which were for family members . The worst funeral I attended was for my Uncle Vincent I was about maybe 10 years old. It was a painful experience that I will always remember because he was like a father to my siblings and I. He would take us to places my parents didn't have time for like the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Detroit Science center and my favorite memory the car wash. My Uncle had his whole life ahead of him. He was the type of man who would literally give you the shirt off his back. He was young in his early 30s, an electrical engineer with a strong faith in God but his life was taken from him by a senseless act of violence. That day was painful for my siblings and I. We couldn't bare to go inside the funeral but some how I mustered up the strength to go inside the church to bid him goodbye. But as I walked down the middle aisle the person I saw laying in that casket did not resemble my uncle. It was him but he laid there lifeless, gray and bloated. I couldn't say goodbye to someone that was clearly already gone. I tell you this story to say "give your roses". This phrase means to show love and appreciation to those you care for because you just don't know when the Lord will call them home.
We know this is true because most recently we lost the beautiful and talented Whitney Houston. It seems as though many people did not appreciate her talent and took it upon themselves to bash her at every turn when it came to drugs and her relationship issues. Its crazy because too often we forget that celebrities are indeed people who have feelings and family. I think we need to take more time to celebrate people and not bring them down because no one is perfect. That is why the scripture goes "judge not lest ye be judge" (Matthew 7) or even "let he who is without sin cast the first stone" (John 8:7). In a song created by Kanye West entitled "Roses" he talks about a family member on their death bed. He basically goes on to say we need to celebrate and remember those we love while they are alive on this earth. Check the song and video here:
Recently, I have lost a few people I knew. One person was a grade school friend who had just lost her brother to homicide a year ago from the day she died. The cause of her death is unknown. The second person I knew was a college schoolmate who was in the same pre-college program with me. You can read about her here. I was not close to her but I have a few close friends who were but every time I did interact with her she was a nice person to be around. In that article you can tell the impact she had on the lives around her and I could tell by the floods of messages left on her Facebook wall. Her birthday was only a few days from mine and that is when it hit me, she did not get to make it to her 30th birthday. This hit so close to home for me because it really makes me think that I need to seize every moment of life that God blesses me with. I will make a good effort to stay connected to those I love and to make sure I "give them their roses" before they die. Imagine how much better you can make someone feel or behave when you celebrate them while they are alive. Since tomorrow is not promised to anyone, don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today.
P.S. The rose bush you see above is from my boyfriend from Valentine's Day. He is not the mushy or romantic type and I didn't think we were going to celebrate the day. But these were a great surprise for me because he knows I like flowers.