In uncertain times it helps to remember Jim. I did not see him often because he grew up in Florida and I grew up in Michigan. My family visited his family each year, but he was a few years older, and a boy, so we didn’t interact much.
When Jim was 19 his face was smashed in a bad automobile accident. His father – an oral surgeon – and a team of plastic surgeons put his face back together.
And then he dove into a gravel pit to help his girlfriend, who was tangled in a branch, and he broke his neck.
In the hospital, on life support, my cousin Jim kept asking his mom to make sure the machines keeping him alive were securely plugged in to the wall sockets. He worried that someone might trip over the cords and pull them loose.
And then one morning, as my aunt entered his hospital room, she saw peace on her son’s face. He told her that an angel had visited him. He was going to die and it was okay. He was not afraid.
Jim died that afternoon.
But that morning an angel gave a gift to him, to his mom, to me and now to you. I treasure that gift in my heart and pull it out whenever I need a reminder.