In An Instant Everything Can Change

A group of church friends gathered for an evening of fellowship this past week. Everyone enjoyed catching up with one another. A great time was had by all. Joy filled the air. These friends were bound together by their common love for Jesus. As the evening drew to a close, each couple left. On their way home, one couple was struck by a speeding car resulting in a horrific accident. In an instant, everything changed.  Please read more….

Prior to moving to the Carolinas 21 years ago, my wife and I lived in Florida and we attended church with those who were gathered that evening. Through church and through our common involvement in Cursillo, God blessed us with close lifelong friendships. Over the 30 plus years we have known these friends, we were there for each other for births, graduations, weddings and funerals. We were sustained in our joys and sorrows by our shared faith in Jesus Christ.

The couple involved in the accident were within one mile of their home. In a flash, their joy filled evening came to a screeching stop. Suddenly, they found themselves rolling over and over in their automobile. The car was crushed on the driver’s side and upside down. The husband, who was driving, is now hospitalized in serious condition. He sustained internal bleeding, fractures and crushed bones. His wife sustained a fractured arm, bumps and bruises.

At first, it seemed in doubt as to whether he would pull through. When I received the phone call about the accident I cried and prayed. My friend has now stabilized. More orthopedic surgeries are scheduled. Recovery will be slow and painful. Please keep them in your prayers.

Why did I share this story? I did so because in an instant everything in our life can change. This past week, 24 people lost their lives in the tornados that struck Tennessee. James 4:14 tells us this, “you have no idea what your life will be like tomorrow. You are a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears.”

We are called to love one another, and we need to both show and tell those who are close to us just how much we love them. We cannot say it often enough. We cannot wait until tomorrow because tomorrow may not come.

In 2019, over 38,000 people in the United States lost their lives in car crashes. So far, over 20,000 people have died during the 2019-2020 flu season. About 1,000 people a year in the US die from choking, 800 die from drowning, 3,000 die from home fires, 800 die in bicycles accidents, 6,000 die from falling in their homes and in the last eight weeks over 3,200 people worldwide have died from Covid-19 virus.

None of us knows the day nor the hour of our death. We also don’t know the day and hour of death for those we love. Tragedies are a part of life. The grief and pain they inflict are hard to bear. No one should be forced to bear them alone. Even Jesus wept at the death of His friend Lazarus.

Psalms 144:4 says this, “Man is but a breath, his days are like a passing shadow.” I cannot imagine dealing with the difficulties of life without the support of Christian friends. All of us who know the couple injured in the accident have rallied around them in person or in thought and prayer.

In years past in these 4th Day Letters, I have suggested the idea of writing to 40 different people during the 40 days of Lent to tell them how important they are to you and just how much you love them. I did not do that at the beginning of Lent this year. In hindsight, perhaps I should have. It is not too late to do so.

On Calvary, Jesus stretched out His arms on the cross and gave His life to show us just how much He loves us. Before His death, He called us to share His love for us with others. We cannot hesitate to do this!

As I write this message, it appears my friends will survive the crash and in time they will heal from their wounds. They are fortunate to be alive. We need to tell our parents if they are living, our spouse if we have one, our children, grandchildren, siblings, friends, neighbors and co-workers how much they mean to us as often as we can. We cannot wait!

Finally, when tragedy does strike, we need to show those who are impacted the true love of Jesus Christ. In an instant everything can change and when it does, Christian friendship is essential.

Heavenly Father you can bring comfort and healing to those whose lives are suddenly impacted by tragedies. Help us to carry your love to those in need. Surround us Father with true friends who can sustain us too, when heartache and pain come our way. In Jesus name we pray, amen!

As always, I love to read your comments below as well as hear from you personally by clicking here.

Brian Pusateri

Brian is a Christian author and speaker. Brian, a lifelong Catholic, felt his life was forever changed when God spoke to his heart while attending an eight day silent Christian retreat in November of 2011. Soon after that retreat Brian founded 4th Day Letters and Broken Door Ministries. With the God inspired message of mercy and unconditional love that was placed on his heart during that retreat, Brian has been impacting others all over the country and around the world with his weekly letters, his talks, and his all day Christian retreats. In June of 2014, Brian’s life was again impacted in a very dramatic way when his eyesight suddenly became permanently impaired. The initial diagnosis was Multiple Scleroses (MS) but in December of 2019 the diagnosis was corrected to MOG antibody disease, a rare neurological disease. This health challenge has only served to draw Brian closer to God and bolster the importance of this timely yet ageless message.
Brian Pusateri

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24 Comments

  1. Avatar Alex Garcia on March 11, 2020 at 5:19 pm

    As you stated “ in an instant everything can change” and thanks to your words I’m changing/adding to my Lent. I adopted this message and INSTANTLY sent out the words I Love You to some in my contacts. I will chose different contacts daily and continue to do so for the remainder of Lent. Thanks Brian and as you well know and just told you in a text, I Love You. As I pondered on your message I couldn’t help but think how many lives you probably touched today with, “ We are called to love one another, and we need to both show and tell those who are close to us just how much we love them. We cannot say it often enough. We cannot wait until tomorrow because tomorrow may not come.” Three simple words, but yet, so very powerful!!! We need more love in this world, and because of you, today, we have it. Keep writing!!!!!

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 11, 2020 at 5:25 pm

      Alex

      Your kind words brought tears to my eyes. Thank you and may God bless you. I love you too my friend.

      Brian

  2. Avatar Kathleen on March 10, 2020 at 1:13 pm

    My parish womens’ small group is reading, journaling and discussing “Remember Your Death: Memento Mori, Lenten devotional” and it falls in line with your share today. Though it may seem morbid at first consideration, the notion is that we should live every day with our death in mind, and if we do, it will help shape what our days will look like, what we consider important and therefore prioritize, who should we spend time with, what irritations should we NOT focus on and instead embrace the opportunities to make an impact and love others, keeping our eyes on the REAL Prize. Having lost my father to a heart attack as he played golf on his 64th birthday 12 years ago, I know how important it is to have no regrets. He always said, “When it’s my time to go, I hope it’s after a good meal and on the golf course.” I had made his favorite dinner (stuffed cabbage) and held his hand the night before as I prayed a birthday dinner blessing over him. I will forever cherish that gift of an opportunity. “Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you will look back and realize they were the big things.”

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 6:30 pm

      Kathleen

      Wow, what a powerful story. It brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing it. Your reply was spot on. May God’s blessings be with you.

      Brian

  3. Avatar Jim Nolan on March 10, 2020 at 10:44 am

    What an important message for me and, I think, for all of us. YOur friend and his family are in my prayers, Jim

  4. Avatar Rebecca Frier on March 10, 2020 at 10:24 am

    Blessings to you and your friends…this is so true. I have taught my children to always say they love one another. It comes back to all that give it! Thanks Brian! God is so good!

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 12:52 pm

      Rebecca

      Thank you for your post. Our 5 adult children always tell each other and my wife and I they love us every time they are saying goodbye. It is so nice.

      Brian

  5. Avatar Deborah on March 10, 2020 at 10:00 am

    I strive to live this philosophy every day, every moment. It is always a good message, so thank you for putting this out there! God asks us always to be in the present moment, to be fully there in that moment with Him and with all that we do throughout the day. Thank you for this message today!

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 10:11 am

      Deborah

      Thank you for your post. God bless!

      Brian

  6. Avatar Pat Belanger on March 10, 2020 at 9:30 am

    Your letter is so true and appropriate, but we have to expand that love to everyone. When will we learn that we are all one and start treating people that way? You and your friends are so fortunate to have such a close support group? So many people have no one. May God bless and heal your friends.

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 9:55 am

      Pat

      You are so right. This life goes bye so quick. We should do our best to avoid hurting anyone along the way. Everyone could use a little more love.

      Brian

  7. Avatar Paul C. Cronin on March 10, 2020 at 9:18 am

    Brian,

    Thanks once again for such a timely message. We’ve had two very close friends (one is Dan Hammnond’s wife Claire) recently diagnosed with lymphoma and now undergoing chemo therapy treatments. Their lives and the lives of their loved ones changed the moment they received the diagnosis. I love your idea of writing to 40 people during Lent to remind them of their impact in my life….. will start that today.

    I’m grateful your friends will recover from their injuries and will keep them in my daily prayers. Blessings to you and Mary Beth during this holy season.

    Paul

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 9:53 am

      Paul

      Thanks for your post and for your friendship. I was not aware of Dan’s wife diagnosis. I will pray for her.

      Brian

  8. Avatar Evelyn on March 10, 2020 at 7:40 am

    Your message the week really hit home. Like you we have a group of close friends that have been together for many years and these Christ filled friendships are a blessing so far beyond a normal social type connection that I thank God when I think of these people.

    It also hit home because my godson was in a roll over car wreck last week. He and his wife survived with only minor injuries. But the fact that life changes in an instant has been on my mind this week.

    With prayers for our mutual friends and that we all recognize how God blesses us through the people he puts in our lives…

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 8:01 am

      Evelyn

      Thanks for your post. I am glad to hear your grandson and his wife are okay. Life is fragile and sadly too often we all forget that sometimes.

      Brian

    • Avatar DeAnne Wickens on March 10, 2020 at 6:06 pm

      Well this is so obviously overdue. Since I read your first 4th day letter years ago I have thought of you as my friend. I was so blessed when you agreed to come give your Blessed Broken message to my parish. I have thought of you as one of my best friends ever since. I could not let this day go by without saying I love having you as my friend.. God has blessed me and I pray he blesses you as well.

      • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 6:27 pm

        DeAnne

        I feel very much the same and my wife and I have such fond memories of coming to Hannibal, Mo. We hope to come back again. Your prayers, support, and kind words really sustain me in this ministry. God bless

        Brian

  9. Avatar Sara on March 10, 2020 at 4:27 am

    Sending prayers of God’s healing to your friend.

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 5:08 am

      Thank you Sara

    • Avatar Syndia on March 10, 2020 at 8:13 am

      sometimes we get so caught up with everyday things that we forget to do just that. To express our love and gratitude to our loved ones. Thank you always for your powerful messages. Sending prayers from the cursillos family at Immaculate Conception Church!

      • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 8:17 am

        Syndia

        Thank you for your post. May God’s blessing be with you this day! DeColores to everyone in the Immaculate Conception Cursillo Family.

        Brian

  10. Avatar Susan Engelke on March 10, 2020 at 12:35 am

    Great message, especially during this time of renewal. Thank you for sending these weekly letters, always a great start to my week, blessing to you and your family.

    • Brian Pusateri Brian Pusateri on March 10, 2020 at 1:41 am

      Susan

      Thanks for your post. May God’s blessing be with you are your family.

      Brian

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