Begin with a job well done.


This is audio of me reading the story.
The speech is at the end.

"Begin with a job well done" is a belief of mine which developed after my addiction to drugs and a couple near death experiences. These experiences were real to me. I wasn't on a table and flat lined. No, not that type. Panic attacks. It's incredibly crazy to me how magnificently magical our minds materialize reality so real, so realistic to the observer inside our body. 

The time of peace

 "3:16 again! Why do I keep noticing this! It's like every time I look at the clock there it is! Obviously it is scripture reference." I would notice this every day. Why did I just happen to look at the time then? Why not at 3:15 or 3:17. Why on the treadmill did I always notice the 3:16 mark as I ran passed it? It seemed like I would see the number multiple times daily?! 
"9:11. This too? What's the emergency? Do I need to go to church now? Am I going to die soon so I better reconcile my self with God? What is it? Why do I keep noticing these numbers every day!?!?!"
Image result for cricket"And did you know in Chinese culture a cricket will chirp faster and faster during the last moments of your life?" 

         ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

From a dead sleep my eyes shot open. The flutters in my heart were reving like an racing engine. 

"Why do I feel this way? What's going on?" Then I hear it. Right outside my window. "Oh no. That cricket. It can't be. God is taking me now. NOW!? of all times? Why. No just calm down. I'm panicking."
The cricket began to chirp even louder. Even faster. My heart raced faster. My thoughts were louder and more concrete. I looked at the time it was 3:10. 

In a panic I thought "I only have six minutes left. Huh. It wasn't about Jesus at all. It's the time God chose for me to exit. I need to talk to Peyton." 

I slid off my bed and grabbed my phone to dial my moms cell phone. On the floor I laid with the phone ringing to my ear.

"Hello?"
"Hey Mom....I love you." I said in almost a whisper. 
"I love you too Eric. Peyton's awake. He woke up crying his leg was hurting real bad."

It made sense to me. Even more confirmation these were my last moments. A Father and Sons connection are unexplainable.

"Can I talk to him mom?" 
"Sure, here you go."
"Hey Peyton. Are you okay?"
"My leg hurts Dad."
"It's going to be okay. It will stop hurting soon. I want you to know I love you okay."

"I need my Dad here too." "Dad!!!" I yelled. He came down the stairs and sees me laying across the threshold of my door to my room. He came to his knees and said "Eric, are you okay?" I replied "Yea Dad, I just need you here right now."
Still on the phone with my son I keep repeating to him "I love you." I am saying it so much he says, "I know dad, you keep saying that." At that moment I knew everything was going to be okay. "I am going to a better place now Peyton, Don't worry." "What do you mean Dad?" Then he asked my mom what I meant. 
She took the phone from him and said "Eric get up! Everything is fine now. You're okay." 
That's all it took. As if I was under a spell, I snapped out of it. My Dad went back to his room and told me he loved me and left me with a hug. I got up and went back to bed. It was 3:16. Weird.


The time of tragedy


I was waiting for my turn to see the judge. I had been in jail now months for a theft charge in Tampa Florida. There were groups of us in there. They separated us into different pods. And as they called us out one by one, the once dense pod became lighter and lighter. Then suddenly, everything began to change.

I began to see faces of friends and relatives in the people left. My Uncle Rod, Coach Carpenter, and others. I was in purgatory. God was giving me the vision of my funeral after my overdose. Now the image is clear in my mind. A picture of my wife trying to hold my flailing 3 year old in the hospital hallway. My life was flashing before my eyes. My Uncle Rod was the last person at my funeral. He couldn't leave. He kept coming back to my coffin. Over, and over, and over again, shaking his head and banging his hand on the side of the glossy wood. 

I sat down on the floor and folded my arms. With my head buried deep I cried. I cried. I cried. I closed my eyes so tight my eye lids overlapped. And in my minds eye I tried to leave. I wanted to go to another body. I desperately wanted to be born again. I visualized a cry of a baby. I tried to follow it. I wanted my soul to have a new home so bad. So bad. I couldn't believe what I done. The hurt I left behind. The people who believed in me. My coaches, my family, old friends and....my son. All gone. What did I do!!! Why!?!?! Please!!!! Please God Please!!!!!! I sobbed so silently. Then a voice.

"It's okay Eric. You're going to be let out. You've got a job to do. JUST DON'T DRINK!!" 

Then silence. I raised my head with glossy cheeks and sat down. The door opened and I went to see the judge. I was let out. And get this. The first gas station I went to a person offered to buy me a beer. And I accepted....

This leads me to my speech. God has been so patient with me. Today I wonder if this was a panic attack or if it was something else? I wonder if God has a way of showing us alternate endings in our lives, or, if time, reality and consciousness as we know it is very limited. I know God is real. I am very thankful He is my friend, and my Father. Just as he is yours.  

I hope you enjoy my speech. 



Lesson Learned: If I die today will I feel as if I did well at life? Did I do a good job? Will I be excited to watch the movie of my life, or sad, or bored? It is best to live for the end where we will say "I did a good job."

The BA2L is real,
Be addicted to Life,
Eric

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