Life Can Be So Fragile

I don’t know if it has to do with growing older, but I find myself being constantly reminded as to how temporary, and fragile…life can be. I’ve seen my share of tragedies and heartaches since moving up here some 20 years ago. And yesterday, the sudden loss of a young life struck again. It was so unexpected and tragically painful.

A young father, whose family I have known for years was at home and had supper cooking on the grill. His young (6th grader) son, Josh went out to check on the burgers (or whatever it was cooking on the grill) I am told he helps his dad often with the outdoor grilling. When he lifted the lid and was apparently flipping the meat over, there was a sudden burst of flames (grease fire perhaps?) that billowed out and engulfed the young boy. When he gasped in fright and screamed, he inhaled the flames which severely burnt his esophagus and lungs.

Details are still sketchy, but initial reports suggest he was care-flighted to a Dallas hospital and the prognosis for survival was slim. Josh Ham did not make it; he passed away Tuesday morning.

This is so sad to me; even if I hadn’t known the family, it breaks my heart. I cannot begin to fathom the horror of that father as the events played out on that afternoon/evening. I mean, you are enjoying a Sunday afternoon with your family, getting supper ready and gearing up for a new week ahead. School just started here last week and I look out across my class room of kids the same age as Josh and realize that all the plans and dreams this father and mother had for their son have been extinguished in the most horrific manner.

There are no reasons or words that can make sense of this. It could have happened to any of us, on any given day. Which once again brings the reminder glaring back to us – how fragile and unexpectedly brief life can be.

I’m thankful, in light of such a horrible injury, that this young boy need not suffer anymore. It would have been a difficult recovery had he survived. But the suffering is now left in the lap of his family and friends. They will need a great amount of prayers and comfort. God help them.