Reflections by Maxie Dunnam

If I had to do it all over again

A group of sociologists conducted a survey among a group of 50 elderly people at a life care retirement home. Each was asked to complete an open-ended sentence. “If I had it to do over again, I would ______. Three answers emerged. One, I would reflect more. Two, I would risk more. Three, I would do more things that would live on after I am dead. 

You know immediately I would say, Good lessons for our Kirby Family. The title of this monthly column is REFLECTIONS

How reflective are you? Do you move through life at such a hectic pace that you never stop to ask what does all this mean? Is God trying to say something to me in these circumstances? 

What about risk taking? In my preaching and teaching I often ask the question, Do you prefer the hell of a predictable situation rather than risk the joy of an unpredictable one? In reflection, as I look back on my life, the richest, most rewarding periods have come when I have taken the greatest risks. 

The third question may be the most important and challenging: What are you doing, or have done, that will be remembered after you are dead? Will the memories bring joy or sadness? Appreciation or concern? How many folks will be able to say, “I’m so glad my path crossed his”? 

I urge you to spend some deliberate time reflecting on these concerns. I close with this word, there are many who will read this column, whom I have had the privilege of meeting and knowing here at Kirby, to whom I can joyfully say, “I’m so glad my path crossed yours.” 

As I reflect, I am confronted with this challenging fact: It isn’t too late for me to do something about any one of these issues. 

-Maxie Dunnam  

Aging is an extraordinary process where you become the person you always should have been.” 

-David Bowie