COLUMN: Life is a dance

Published 12:54 am Sunday, January 28, 2024

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By J. Edward Howell Jr.
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As we grow and mature into the autumn and winter years of our lives, we begin to notice how many of our friends are no longer around to share life with. Many of us become frightened, apprehensive and despondent concerning our own future. Just remember that God is Sovereign and IN CHARGE! To ease the pain and fear of departing this life, I like to think of life as a dance. Of course you can remember those days, when we gathered together at the Shrine Club, in Suffolk, or the Armory in Franklin to listen to and dance to the music of “The Melody Five” or now “Silver Street.” I think the last dance that Marti and I attended was at the American Legion Hall as guests of Cliff and Willis Barnes to celebrate Cliff’s seventieth birthday. That has been a while ago, but I remember the fun we had. Being with friends during a festive occasion is always a welcome respite. Life is like that. We seem to be having a great time and suddenly the band announces, “The next song will be our last. It will be the last dance of the evening. The midnight hour has come.” It was a time that we did not welcome, but nevertheless we embraced our partners and enjoyed the warmth and comfort of that rhythmic closeness. It was not a bad time because we knew who we were going home with. We looked forward to being with our husbands or wives when the dance was over. We knew that a more enjoyable time of intimacy was promised when we got home. 

So, now, as I look at what time I have left here on earth, I know that an even better time is in the offing. As lovingly as you chose your wife or husband as your partner and friend in this life, choose Jesus Christ also, as your spiritual partner in, not only this life, but in the eternal life to come. When you have Jesus in your heart, you are not alarmed when the last dance is played. You know that the best is yet to come when you go home with Jesus Christ.

J. Edward Howell Jr. is a native of Southampton County. He can be reached via email at