Guest Blog Post

Richard Mabry is a retired physician who, in addition to writing, is a husband and grandfather, plays (and enjoys) golf, and does the hundred-and-one other things that retired people do. He writes medical mysteries including Critical Condition, Code Blue, Diagnosis Death and many more.

Richard offers this blog post exclusively for the Vessel Project.

Dear Vessel Project Reader,

All through our life, we can’t wait to be older.  Grade schoolers want to stay up late and watch TV.  Adolescents want to be old enough to drive.  Teen-agers want to graduate and get away from home.  Young folks want to build a life of their own.  Middle-aged persons want a better job, more money, better possessions. As we get near the magic age of Social Security and Medicare, we want to retire.  We’re always looking forward, anxious to get to the next stage.

Nevertheless, there are times when we want to go back, not forward.  For example, when we reach the end of our allotted years, we want to turn back the clock and start all over again.  And when things don’t work out the way we want them to, when we do stuff we’re ashamed of or when we foul up, we want a “do-over.”  We want our lives to be perfect.  Of course, that’s impossible, but it remains our “impossible dream.”

Throughout all this, the catch phrase in our minds is “And they lived happily ever after.”  In our heart of hearts, though, we know that’s not likely to happen.

My “happily ever after” came to a sudden halt in September of 1999 when my wife of forty years died. Now God has blessed me once more with the love of a wonderful woman, and has given me a new career. Through all this, what have I learned?  I’ve learned that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed.  I’m acutely aware of the blessings God has given me, and eternally grateful for every one of them.  I’ve learned that some things in this life–little things, it might seem–are terribly important. And I’ve learned that some things that seemed really important to me once aren’t really important at all.

So, my challenge to you is this.

Every day, when you wake up, embrace the moment and say to yourself:  “I have today.”

Let it color your life, the way you treat your family, the way you interact with the people around you, the attitude you bring to your work or your daily activities, and most of all, your relationship with your Creator. Seize your day remembering Ephesians 5:16.

We are a living Testament, and those around us are reading in our lives what Jesus means to us, and to them.  Tomorrow will be a blank page in that book.  I challenge you to fill it in such a way that someday our Lord will smile at you, and say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”

Oh God, our Creator and Redeemer, source of all our days,

Each day, one day at a time, we commit ourselves anew to love for our family, our friends, our fellow men, and You. Use us, walk beside us, and continue to love us as we love You.

In the precious name of our Saviour, Amen.

Richard Mabry is a retired physician, past Vice President of the American Christian Fiction Writers, and author of “medical suspense with heart.”

His novels have been a semifinalist for International Thriller Writers’ debut novel, finalists for the Carol Award and Romantic Times’ Reader’s Choice Award, and winner of the Selah Award. His latest, Critical Condition, is his seventh published novel. You can follow Richard on his blog, on Twitter, and his Facebook fan page.