“Time is an equal opportunity employer. Each human being has exactly the same number of hours and minutes every day. Rich people can’t buy more hours. Scientists can’t invent new minutes. And you can’t save time to spend it on another day. Even so, time is amazingly fair and forgiving. No matter how much time you’ve wasted in the past, you still have an entire tomorrow.” ~Denis Waitley

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If you’ve read my posts long enough you know how passionate I am about all of us uncovering the unique path we were meant to live and that we are currently journeying through a long series on how to do this with intentionality and productivity. It is interesting to me, however, that as we each travel down our individual roads we all have the same amount of time.

Some will live longer than others, but in any given day none of us has one minute more or one minute less.

I wonder how much time we’ve all wasted on the thought, if only I had more time…

How weird, really. Why do we even take a second to think this when each passing second tells us that time never changes? The truth is that we will always feel like there is not enough time, especially when we whisper that wasted thought to ourselves instead of actually doing something. Charles Buxton gets it absolutely right in his quote, “You will never find time for anything. If you want time, you must make it.”

Time is a choice!

Often, I believe mastering time is the decision we utilize the least.

William Penn (one of my favorite historical figures) said, “Time is what we want most,but what we use worst.”

We waste so much time, really. And then we complain about our lack of hours, days, months and years. But I’m not telling you anything new. We’ve all heard this before. What I really want to focuse on today is the what.

The decision really boils down to what we do with our time.

I truly believe the what is more of our problem than time itself (we will examine the “what” question when we journey into summer next month. If you’d like the refresh yourself on our roadmap–what I’m choosing to tackle each season in this journey–simply click here for the original blog).

We are dissatisfied with the amount of time we have because we are deciding (often unconsciously out of habit) to spent our time on things that don’t matter.

We are wasting time.

Today I am consciously aware of how much time I often spend managing our accumulation of stuff. Now, I will say that I do this much less than I did before because I’ve made a conscious decision to help others through Chicks with Choices rather than cleaning and organizing things, but I’m forced to deal with all the embellishments this week.

Our oldest son graduates from high school in eight days. We are celebrating this wonderful event in four days by opening our home to all the people who have mattered in our life and have journeyed with our son for eighteen years. Since I’ve made the choice to place “managing stuff” on the back burner, I am currently inundated cleaning, hauling out and rearranging STUFF to make our home company ready.

Here’s my confession, though. I LOVE this! I LOVE organizing, decorating and beautifying our home. It is pure delight for me to put my business on the back burner during this season of graduation and focus on family and homemaking. My daughter, Maggie, even said to me the other day how many of her friends comment on our home. I explained that for some people decorating comes naturally and that maybe I should have gone into interior decorating. Maybe we would be better off financially if I had, but what will money and a beautiful home get us in eternity?

Homemaking and playing hostess comes easy for me. It is also where I feel in control. So the question I have had to ask is, does my unique path include homemaking?

Obviously if the answer is “no”  I still need to scrub the toilet. Where I’ve had to get honest is in the fact that homemaking is where I tend to waste time. How important will the organized drawer be when I face my Creator?

As we continue to journey through The Cost, I’m sorry to add that TIME will be another area where we must sacrifice.

To choose what matters takes time!! There is no way around this. So here are some questions to ask yourself…

~What am I really doing with my time?

~Are those things going to matter when I die?

~What difference am I making in this world with my time?

~ What can I cut out that isn’t contributing to the path God has for me to follow?

~Am I spending too much time on what is comfortable and therefore leave little time to become what I was created to be?

~Am I confusing talent with God’s will and desire for me?

That gives you plenty to ponder, but in closing here is an added thought. Our family had the privilege of addending our son’s baccalaureate service last Sunday. For those unfamiliar with this term, baccalaureate is a centuries-old tradition that provides an opportunity to bring God into the students’ rite of passage. The ceremony brings God into graduation and the fact that He has been the one walking with each student throughout their school years. Often, as in our son’s case, these services are run by the students themselves providing a chance to speak on how God has worked within their school and life for eighteen years.

There were so many postive things about this service, but what struck me the most was the mention of one word over and over again.

Community!

There was no doubt that these kids understood themselves better because of their friendships and support of one another. They communicated this importance and were fully aware that in order for them to remain successful in their walk with God, they will need to seek community once they leave high school.

Possibly bold on my part but I believe the eighteen year olds are more aware of their need for community than adults. I’ve witnessed over an over again, by watching my son and his friends, that many are making time to build one another up in the faith! And it looks different that the adult version of going to church and chatting for a few awkward minutes in the foyer. Their encounters are organic, relational and more spontanious. They do things, invite friends who don’t go to church and often gather in coffee shops. Imagine that!

I also believe they find the time because they lack stuff. They have yet to own a home with all the trappings. So, one more question to ask yourself in closing.

~How much time am I allowing for community?

Before running off with my duster, I give another shameless plug for CoffeeHouse Chats. We will never have time for them unless we make the time. I’m looking for leaders who don’t have enough precious minutes in her day, but understands the importance of making that time for the sake of authentic community. I’m also looking for leaders who dare to leave comfort and talent in a search for what really matters with her short amount of time here on earth.

 

 

Photo credit: Flickr (Creative Commons)