When Elections Don’t Matter: A Tribute to Ryan Woods

I’ve read and heard about all I can read and hear about the election. I’ve seen people who have gotten into such heated debates that friendships literally have dismantled. I’ve heard people talking about the end of the world since Obama got reelected. I’ve heard Obama supporters make fun of those people. The election rhetoric is still spewing out everywhere and this seems to be the only focus of so many people.

But yesterday, while many Americans were arguing over who was a better candidate and whether or not Obama is going to save the country or destroy it, a young wife, mother, and 2 young children were lamenting the death of a man three years younger than me. Though I didn’t know Ryan Woods personally, we do have many mutual friends. At times I’ve been jealous of the kind of husband and father Ryan was, even at his sickest moments. Ryan and Jessica did not see life as “you and me” but only as “we.” Ryan said, “The idea of her doing any part of life without me, or me without her, is literally unimaginable because we’ve always done life together.”

Yesterday afternoon, at 30 years old, Ryan breathed his last breath, leaving behind a beautiful wife and 2 beautiful children. I can’t help but to be ashamed when I let even one day go by that my focus is on anything but my wife, my daughter, and my God. Tuesday night while I was glued to the TV waiting the election results, a young woman was spending her last hours with her dying husband.

I share Ryan’s story as a tribute to him because Ryan calls anyone who has seen his video to “live into the reality that we are all dying” and to ask the question, “What kind of story are we going to live out as we’re dying?” In the grand scheme of things, elections don’t matter much. They way we live today does. The way we treat others does. The way we love our family and our God does. We are all dying. How will you live today?

One thought on “When Elections Don’t Matter: A Tribute to Ryan Woods”

  1. This is so powerful — so many life lessons here. I honestly don’t know how this couple lived so much while in the face of death. Thanks so much for the wonderful reminders about how we should live each day, Jimmy! Great article!!!! Amazing video!!!!

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