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One Second Can Last Forever

Updated on January 29, 2016

One second. How long is one second to you? One Mississippi? One-one thousand? The proverbial blink of the eye? A sneeze? In whatever measure you can relate to, my life nearly could have forever been altered. Because of the difference one second makes.

My wife and I went shopping the other day to Costco. She dropped me off by the door and continued to park the car. I waited just inside the store for her. Soon, she came sauntering in, with her ever present beautiful smile. She grabbed my hand and softly told me, “I was almost just hit by a car!” WHAT???? How? Where? What Happened?

Too close for comfort

Impatience on the part of a driver who had to stop her car because the car directly in front of her wasn’t moving onwards soon enough for her desires. So, in the darkening, early, evening, winter sky, she turned her steering while sharply and punched her accelerator and began to speed around that lead car. All of this momentary action happened just as my wife had looked both ways and had started to cross the pathway to enter the store.

And that’s when that fateful second took place. Thank God that impatient woman driving the “hurry up” car was alert enough and quick enough to immediately slam on her brakes. Thank God the distance her car traveled wasn’t longer and more speed had not been obtained. My wife said she was helplessly in line with the middle of this woman’s car and said that the driver stopping had missed her by the universally acknowledged “this much.” (Hold your thumb and fore-finger apart as slim as you can).

Needless to say, my wife’s heart was beating 1000 times a second and my first reaction was to be sure she was alright. But later, I mulled over the reality of how our lives, or anyone else’s for that matter, can change in a mere second. It can happen and does happen in everyday life. But for the grace of God…

It served as a reality check for me. I do not control what goes on in every circumstance. It reminded me to appreciate all that we have and to not take anything for granted. Imagine if all you had done and experienced in life could change in a mere second. It is a chilling thought.

Of all the things I have written, the best was the thought I had mentally written that evening…”Dear God, Thank You.” A few words perhaps, but none more genuine.

You cannot perceive beauty, but with a serene mind.

— Henry David Thoreau


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