“Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it you can never get it back.” –Harvey Mackay
Growing up, impatience plagued me. I remember standing at the bus stop each morning, counting the seconds and rolling my eyes until the bus would pull up at my feet. I was up and ready to get the day started, and the bus driver’s arrival was something I couldn’t control. Didn’t he know that I liked to get to school early? This impatience was a daily ritual that leaked into every area of my life. The school days were never quick enough to get me to my after-school activities. And those activities drug on and kept me from relaxing in the evenings.
In all honesty, I wanted to fast-forward through my entire adolescence so I could get to college because it meant freedom, more respect, and an “adult status.” But almost as quickly as I walked into my first official college class, the dreams of my future morphed into meeting the love of my life and building a family together. Now that most of my dreams have come true, I have barely spent any time enjoying them because I pile a new dream on top of the old ones.
Life’s moments come and go so quickly.
I recently asked myself why it’s so much easier to live in the past and future when both are unavailable. All that we can count on in this life is happening in the present, yet our existing time slips away between the bookends of our preceding and unfolding life.
In The Christian View’s Episode 70, the hosts focused on the topic Father Time. They reminded us that God is the author of time and the enemy loves to rob us of our here and now! Basically, all of the time I spend wishing my life away or thinking about the “good ‘ole days” is giving the evil one power over my life. It’s distracting me from moments that could be placed in front of me for enjoyment, to develop wisdom, or to impact a life! I love the verse from Esther 4:14 that talks about how there are certain moments for which we were created, and we don’t want to miss them!
“Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created.”
One way that we can be sure not to miss any important moments is to intentionally steward our 86,400 seconds we get each day. These seconds are what create our life experience.
Growth, maturity, and wisdom all develop through experience. We don’t start our lives with the knowledge we have today. Much of what we learn is a gift taught to us by the great teacher of experience.
You see, we often want to leap past the insignificant experiences yet still gain wisdom. But we earn wisdom with each failure as well as success. Growth is a process. Learning is trial and error, and we must choose to authentically participate, even in the seemingly trivial moments, if we wish to develop.
You may be experiencing a time that seems meaningless. What can you choose to learn from these moments? Where are the lessons and growth? What pieces can you pick out that you may look at five years from now and see as stepping stones?
Life is like putting together a puzzle. We see the picture begin to develop with each piece we place, and we learn more as we go. Some pieces are vibrant with color while others seem plain. The longer we work on the puzzle, the easier it becomes to put together and find worth in each piece. We must remember to admire each component of the puzzle, rather than just the picture we see in the end.
Growth takes time.
We must slow down long enough to savor what we have now since we are not promised tomorrow. God tells us not to worry, doubt, fear, but he DOES tell us to TRUST!
Slow down long enough to intentionally trust your future and personal growth into the hands of God and to reflect on all that you can learn from your past.
Next time you find yourself wishing away the present, remember all that you choose to do in the here and now is an important piece to your life’s puzzle that is creating your future.