Today I received OXYCOURAGE from a wonderful man who was a valuable player on one of my basketball coached teams, approximately 44-years-ago team. He has had a significant career in changing thousands of lives. These are the words of Jack McGill: “Thanks, Fred, for your note. Your encouragement is ointment to my heart. Love you! Let me know how I can pray for you.”

My reply to him for prayers (and to you) was: “Please pray for me that I may live well until God wants me to die well — both for His honor and glory.”

The older I become, the less complex life is. Each day is a new opportunity to live my life purpose: To love the Holy Trinity with all my heart, soul, and mind; then love “neighbors” — the highest creation, mankind, people. I can also enjoy the beauty of all other of God’s created acts, from a tiny yellow flower to His mighty rivers and majestic mountains.

It seems impossible to die well without living well. My view of death affects how I live now. I have seen and read this over and over again. This was done by my heroes: Peter and Paul in the New Testament, my mother Kathleen, my close friends Chuck Hepworth and Joe Tremarello. When I close my eyes for the last time, I pray I will have fought my life’s fight well, knowing then heaven life is for real eternally.

May I give you a metaphor related to anchor and sailing? TO DEPART is a sailing metaphor. It means to pick up your anchor and set sail. Life is sitting at the dock. Sailors live for the journey, the adventure. They love being at sea. It is while they are at sea that they think they are truly alive. Yet, in reality, if we think life is exciting now, then wait until the next! This is when life really begins. To depart maybe for the better. 

Can there be anything better than living and dying well? I don’t think so!