Carpe Diem – Never Pass Up a God-sent ‘Life Opportunity’ 


By Roxanne Drury 

Life! Life is a funny thing. Scripture tells us that when we are born, our days are already numbered. The tricky part is that we don’t know how long we have or what our life will look like. Many times, as a child or a teen, we have dreams of what it “might” be; we have “hopes” of what it will look like. But we never know what the reality is until we are actually in it. 

A while back, I spent an entire day with one of my granddaughters. Just she and I hanging out, baking and shopping and yakking. Out of the clear blue, she asked me how many kids I wanted when I was growing up. Without hesitation, I could say, “Ten – all boys!” Of course, her response was, “Really?” “Yep”, I said, “really!” 

She then asked how many Grumpa (Grandpa’s nickname) wanted and I had to tell her I honestly don’t remember that we ever talked about it when we got married. He may remember though – he has a much better memory than I do. 

My granddaughter proceeded to tell me that her mom wanted four kids, but her parents stopped at two because they were afraid they’d have more girls. Then she talked about how expensive kids were – girls especially because of all the clothes and make-up and stuff (and here she rattled off a zillion girly things). And interestingly enough, she was very knowledgeable about boys. Even though she has no brothers and no boy cousins, she was able to quickly point out how expensive boys were because of all the sports and athletic equipment. (Notice there was no mention of the cost to feed, house, and educate children…) 

At any rate, I just listened to the chatter of this wise old 9-year-old. And I couldn’t help but think to myself: At 9 years old wasn’t I still playing in the fields and catching snakes? Weren’t these kinds of thoughts the furthest thing from my mind? Life was way different for kids when I was growing up. We stayed kids longer. 

But, here is the kicker – after all this talk about how large of a family each family unit dreamt of, I failed to ask her what she was dreaming of. Now, it could be that we arrived at our destination and the conversation moved on. But still, I missed an opportunity to share in the dreams of my grandchild. Who knows if this topic will ever come up again? Yes, I can and will try to bring it up when we are together another day; but somehow, I don’t think the moment will be quite the same. 

All of this is to say I think we have to learn and practice keeping our eyes and our minds open to see what I call “life opportunities” and seize them. I am talking about the times we can share in another’s dreams, goals, or plans – share a sorrow, offer a helping hand or a word of encouragement. Give a hug or pat a back, touch an arm or hold a hand, ask a question, set a date to meet, or make a phone call. 

Life opportunities are what enrich our lives and connect us. And that is truly God’s plan for us. He wants us in community. He wants us in relationship with our tribe of people. It is easier, though, to walk away from a hard conversation. It is easier just to do our own thing. We have our own ideas and plans, but God’s plans and His ways are much better. He wants us to experience and use those life opportunities to build strong relationships with those we know and love. Strong enough to last. Strong enough to have those tough conversations. Strong enough to call each other out. Strong enough to just sit and not talk at all. Strong enough that just being there is enough. 

It’s a terrible loss to miss out on the opportunity for that kind of life enrichment. I am feeling that this morning, and am hoping I will be wiser when the next life opportunity comes along. I pass this on to you as a life opportunity to learn from. 

Carpe diem. Seize the day. Seize the moment. 

Life is short. Don’t miss the moments that can make it all the richer. 

“Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12) 

“By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life.” (1 Timothy 6:19) 

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not come. We have only today. Let us begin.”  – Mother Teresa 

“Forever is composed of nows.” – Emily Dickinson 

And in the words of Erma Bombeck: “Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the Titanic who waved off the dessert cart.” 

Blessings, friends! Carpe diem! 


Roxanne Drury is a wife, mother, grandmother, and retired Christian preschool teacher who served the Lord in children’s ministry for over 45 years and is currently on staff at Rockharbor Church in Meridian. She has written a group study guide on Psalm 23. She may be reached at [email protected]. 

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