If I died today, would I make it to Heaven?

March 6, 2017jaz.jpg

“If I died today, would I make it to Heaven?”

I’m not sure, at 12 years old, I would be brave enough to ask such a question. To be honest, at 27, I can’t say I would utter those words.

But you… you were brave. In a way I will never understand; in a way that I envy. Although I know I shouldn’t be envious, I can’t help but long for the courage you possessed at 12.

So young, yet so wise.

It’s like you knew when you walked out of your front door, for the last time, that you were confidently walking into the Kingdon of God.

You could ask because you knew the answer.

March 6, 2008

I’m laying in my twin size college dorm bed, wrapped up in my camouflage comforter, hitting the snooze button one more time before I made my way to class.

That’s when I got the call.

Time froze.

To be honest, I can’t even remember who notified me. Maybe it was my sister. But I’m not sure that really matters. All I remember is hearing the news.

You were gone.

Time froze.

I was angry. You suffered enough. You tragically lost your father to a hit and run by a drunk driver. You mother passed from lung cancer not long after. As far as I was concerned, you had suffered enough.

I was angry at the young person who took your life.

I was angry because I couldn’t cry. At the time, I had developed an emotional barricade; never processing the pain and trauma surrounding me. I didn’t cry at the news. I didn’t cry at your funeral. Although I wanted to; I thought it was the right thing to do… I couldn’t.

I was angry that you didn’t even have the chance to experience life.

Angry that we’d never know what beauty you would bring to this world.

But you. You weren’t angry. You had peace. Perhaps because you were reassured that if you died that day, as you did, you would make it to Heaven.

The anniversary of your passing reminds me that I can be brave like you. Maybe it’s because I have a piece of your brave soul with me at all times.

Your name tattooed on my right shoulder is a gentle reminder to live my life the right way so that I too can confidently answer the question: If I died today, would I make it to Heaven? 

Your picture in my car is a gentle reminder that tomorrow is not promised; so I must do what I can to grow closer to God and live a life that allows me to confidently answer the question: If I died today, would I make it to Heaven?




I can be brave, like you.

I will be brave, like you.



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