Is Your To-Do List Correct?

What’s on your to-do list for today? A few chores? A few errands? Would it change if this happened to you?

A man named Carl was getting in the holiday spirit by watching the movie The Santa Clause on Christmas Eve when he got a text message from his doctor’s office…diagnosing him with “aggressive lung cancer.” He sat there in shock until he was able to show the message to his mom. …who also received the same text. After realizing he wasn’t the only one to receive the message he began to question the text, wondering if it was “some sort of sick joke.”

About 20 minutes later, the NHS sent another text: “Please accept our sincere apologies for the previous text message sent. This has been sent in error. Our message to you should have read We wish you a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.” This seems hard to believe and even harder to swallow knowing it’s a true story and really happened.

Something similar actually happened to me, too. I had a routine test last September that sent me into a similar “panic mode”. The test results suggested I had a cancerous mass and needed immediate surgery, radiation, and chemo. The nurse was literally crying as she came into the room and told me she’d be praying for me. Within a few days, I had multiple urgent follow-up tests, meetings with surgeons, specialists and even close family members to tell them the grim news. So my daily “to-do” lists changed to lists of things I wanted to do before I died, which could be soon.

It made me think. A lot. Do the things I think I really need to do today matter? Is my life filled with meaningless tasks? If they said I only had 6 months to live, would I go to yoga class or order more water filters for the fridge? Or would I book that trip to Hawaii and try skydiving?

Turns out, the first doctor was wrong. None of the follow-up tests reveal that I’m dying soon. Or, maybe God answered the prayers that nurse prayed for me. Prayers are powerful. Either way, it made me think about my lists. So much of our time and energy is spent on what’s urgent, not on what’s important.

If you got the text that Carl got or the news that I received, would it change your to-do list? Would it say “make sure my kids know about Jesus”, “take all our extra winter coats to the mission”, “spend time in prayer and in the word”?

Kinda makes you think, doesn’t it? I hope so. ~Brooke