It’s easy to take life for granted.
So many of us live our lives going through the motions, expecting tomorrow to come, and not giving a second thought to how we lived our lives that day or how we treated other people.
We may have fought with our spouse or yelled at our kids, or we may have just gone about our busy day and neglected to savor the little things, or got too busy to read one more story or listen to the little voice who needed us…. or said ‘no’ one too many times when we should have just said ‘yes.’
It’s so easy to just go to bed and hope for a fresh start in the morning. Whether you totally failed as a parent, were not pleasant to be around, or even if you were the perfect Christian, you aren’t promised tomorrow. None of us are – no matter our beliefs or circumstances.
Unfortunately, it sometimes takes a tragedy to be reminded of this.
That tragedy struck last week.
On March 21st, 2017, Mandy Kelly from Worshipful Living, along with her husband and two youngest children, were taken from this earth when they died in a horrible house fire. I never met Mandy face to face; but I didn’t have to to know that she was a lover of the Lord, a kind and gentle soul, and a dedicated wife, mother, and friend.
Mandy did some work for me behind the scenes here at My Joy-Filled Life for a short time. We were also in many of the same blogging circles and groups, and we were currently taking an online marketing course together with a small group of other bloggers. I read her blog and followed her on Instagram – I loved seeing her smiling face in my Instagram stories feed everyday.
When I sat down at my computer on Tuesday, March 21st, I was expecting to just check my email quickly before I started doing some school with my kids. They were all actually sitting at the table waiting for me (that rarely happens), but I got way delayed because I was so confused and shocked by what I had just read on my screen about Mandy and her family’s passing. Had I read that right? At first I hadn’t; at first I thought that her husband was the only one that died in the fire. Then I read it again; the reality was that her husband, Mandy, and their two youngest children had lost their lives.
I couldn’t believe what I was reading. My heart raced; I got chills; I was nauseous. It may seem strange that I could be so deeply saddened by the death of someone I never knew in person. That’s the funny thing about the blogging community, especially among the smaller circles. They become your people. They become your friends; in some cases, some of your best friends.
I couldn’t help but think of Mandy all day that day – reliving the interactions we’d had; remembering her family stories; wondering what happened that night; being thankful that I had known her, even if it was for a brief time. She continues to be in my thoughts and prayers as the days go by.
Mandy was a light. A light for Jesus. And she shined bright. People were drawn to her. She was just one of those warm souls. Her faith was unwavering and infectious.
From her death I learned that we should live each day to the fullest and not take any day, any hour, or any relationship for granted, because we aren’t promised tomorrow.
But more importantly, from her life, I’ve learned that we should live each day to the fullest. We need to shine the light of Jesus for all to see. That’s what Mandy did. And that’s how I’ll always remember her.
Please keep Mandy’s family in your prayers, especially the two surviving children. And if you feel led, her church is collecting donations; this will go to her remaining two children to help provide for them. If you would like to give, here is the contact for that:
2003 Charleston Hwy.
Cayce, SC 29033You can also donate via the Trinity’s website. There is a GIVE button on the menu. Choose the ‘Kelly’s’ from the drop down options.
Also, please visit Mandy’s blog, read some posts, and be encouraged.