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One Last Glimpse

As I travel northeast on Interstate 76 out of Denver, CO, the Rockys fill my rear view and side mirrors. Driving away from the mountains is always a sad thing. I know I won’t view them again for a good long while, so I try to see them before they are no longer visible.

Getting one last glimpse is important to me, and so I say an audible goodbye. When the mountains fade from view because of the contour of the land, my stomach feels their absence. My heart misses them already. I long to be back among them.

Saying goodbye is never easy, but it is an essential part of moving forward in life. Of not getting stuck. Believe me, I know this. The last glimpse I had of my living, breathing husband was at 1:00 am on the day he died. I was dozing on the couch, waiting for friends from out of town to arrive for a football weekend.

He noticed the empty spot in the bed next to him, and came out to investigate. We exchanged some conversation as he stood in the doorway to the living room, before going back to bed. When I awoke in the morning, he was already on his bike ride. I went about my leisurely Saturday morning scrapbooking with friends. The next glimpse I had of him was in the emergency room, lacking life and breath.

We remember vividly the last moments with our friends and loved ones. The image is forever imprinted on our minds. And not just in death, either. There are the last glimpses of friends that move away. The last glimpse of our child going off to college and coming home an adult. The last glimpse of the baby who, right before our very eyes, has turned into a toddler with personality and language.

The circle of life has last glimpses embedded in them.To ignore these moments is to not live a full life. To dwell on them too much can result in the same. It is essential to find a way forward and grow through these pivotal encounters.

It is the Season of Lent, the forty days leading up to Easter. It is a time of reflection and repentance. A time to journey with Jesus to Jerusalem, and to His inevitable death on the cross. A time to reflect on the last glimpse that Jesus’ followers had of their teacher. One of seeing Him breathe His last breath on the cross, while flanked by two criminals.

The soldiers took down the cros