Life is Fragile (Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020)

Kobe Bryant was 11 months older than me, while Manny Pacquiao is 7 months older, yet I still tell everyone that we three are of the same age. Well, for one, that's true. At least for one month in twelve. 

Kobe and Manny are two of my most admired persons. I have looked up to them for as long as I can remember, even though they are my contemporaries. 

From their work ethics, their habits, to their mindsets, to how they are now as dads like me, I've always tried to emulate them as best as I can in my life. 

Of course, I am not in the same league as these two giants, and most likely will never be in this lifetime. But it gives me great peace to think that we are all in the same age group and the principles they live by is also applicable to my life. 

It was a shock

This blog post came two days late because I still could not believe one of my idols have already passed away. It was early Monday morning here in the Philippines when I woke up reading the news on Facebook: Kobe Bean Bryant was dead at 41. I was shocked, to say the least.

And the way Kobe died, it just breaks my heart, especially thinking about his daughter being with him in that accident. As a dad myself, I couldn't imagine what went on his mind as the helicopter went down. 

Perhaps he held his daughter as tight as he could, telling her that everything's going to be alright, as they both come face to face with death. 

The only solace I had was that they had each other, daughter and dad, at such a tragic time.

A profound effect

Kobe's death had a profound effect on me, not only because he was my idol, but also because he was at the peak of his life when it came. It hit me that if someone as healthy and strong as Kobe can die, then anyone of us could at anytime.

His death made me come to grips with my own mortality. It made me go back to my focus of being grateful for every single day given to me by God. To love my wife and kids as best as I could and to always tell them that I love them whenever I get the chance.

Kobe was not a drunkard or a washed up celebrity when he went away. There was not any trace of self-destruction. He was the perfect husband for his wife, the ultimate dad for his girls, and it seems like he was even greater in his post-basketball life.

Then just like that... everything was taken away. Indeed, the Bible is right, we can be here today and gone tomorrow. 
"The life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more." - Psalm 103:15-16
It's an ongoing lesson about humility. No one can boast about himself absolutely. No matter how healthy you are or how financially secure you are, we are all equal in the face of death.
"Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring." - Proverbs 27:1
"Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes." - James 4:14
Not too many people realize that this life is so fragile. We are not in control of everything. Only God is. 

Come to think of it, the best security that we have is our relationship with God. Why? Because it goes beyond this short, uncertain, and temporary earthly existence that we have.

Final Thoughts

Kobe Bryant's death made me reassess my life. Questions like, "Am I doing my best as a husband?" "Am I being a good father to my children?" "Does my life give glory to my Creator?" "Am I doing this right?"

You? What legacy do you want to have when you leave this earth? What do you want to leave behind? What would people say about you when your time here is done?

And the most important question: "How prepared am I for eternity?" We may be forgetting to get ready for what is most important and inevitable.

You know, there is life after death, and there are only two destinations. In the presence of God, or without God. 

If there is no God or life after death, then living a life for God is still a great legacy to leave behind. But what if there is a God and there is really life after death? Where do you think you are going?

Yes, there is no guarantee of tomorrow for any of us. But God has offered a free gift of eternal life through His Son, Jesus Christ, and we should not miss this gift. 

I pray that you get to know Jesus, experience His life-giving love, forgiveness, and acceptance, and receive God's promise of eternal life with Him in heaven. Blessings to you, my friend.