this is not a drill

Last Saturday, as perhaps many have now heard, the following message went out to everyone in the state of Hawaii:

“Emergency Alert


An unknown false alarm — accidentally sent after an employee “pushed the wrong button” during a routine drill run after a shift change, according to Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency — sent Hawaiians went “from paradise to panic,” said CNN.

“You’re thinking, ‘Oh my gosh, are we going to die?’”

Testimonies and tales from those involved are shocking and scary, even though within somewhere between 15-30 minutes, contradicting communication was mass delivered identifying the alert as an error. There was a surplus of huddles and tears and perceived last phone calls and texts, as any of us would imagine.

There were many so-called “goodbyes.”

The PGA was actually hosting an event in Honolulu at the time. Said golfer Charles Howell III,”All the alarms went off at the same time. It got everyone’s attention. I didn’t know what to do. We all stared at each other. It kind of shows you the world we live in now. Your whole life can change in a second.”

First, before I suggest anything else, let us thank the good Lord that the alarm was false. He is good indeed.

But second, it makes me wonder.

What would get our attention?

What would we choose to do if we knew our time was limited?

 What would we do if we knew our whole life was about to change in a second?

Would we keep on doing what we’re doing now?

Would we rant?

Would we rave?

Would we treat others better?

Would we reconcile?

Would we forgive?

Young NBA star, Karl-Anthony Towns, who plays for the Minnesota Timberwolves, said it well:

“Words cannot describe the relief my family and I feel that the alarm in Hawaii was false. My girlfriend was born and raised in Hawaii and with most of her family there, the panic was real. We should thank God for every day no matter the struggles and tell our family we love them.”

We should thank God for every day…

No matter the struggles…

And tell our family we love them.

Maybe we should start before we believe the end is imminent.


Photo by Patryk Grądys on Unsplash