Today I’m sitting in a booth at Panera people watching mostly. I had visions of writing- a blog, a chapter, even an email, but I’m just not into it. I’m tired! Discouraged! Weary! Yet I’m not!
Do you ever have those days? When you feel like you can’t do the next thing even though you are excited about it. You even like what you are doing!
A college team of girls and their coaches came in for dinner. I didn’t ask if it was volley ball or basketball, but immediately the space around me was filled with conversation.
As I sat watching I reflected back on my own journey.
When you are young, you don’t think about life ending. You are young! You expect to have all of life ahead of you! You live and dream and plan as if there is nothing stopping you.
When you are in your 20’s, you get a job or marriage that keeps you focused. The job wasn’t what you thought it would be- but hey, it’s a job. You marriage isn’t the fairy tale you dreamed it would be, but hey you are in love. You still have the energy and the stamina to tackle anything in your way, so you keep on with determination.
You hit your 30’s and 40’s and suddenly thing gets harder. You get the promotion you thought you wanted and the family you always dreamed of. Now you have trouble remembering what your dream is because somewhere, someone else is telling you what to do. Your boss, the needs of your kids, the bills that must be paid. You can’t imagine what it would look like to stop what you are doing- if you drop one ball the whole thing will be crashing in on you. So you keep going!
You turn 50! You either lost your passion for The job you had or you got laid off. Now you are starting over again. The kids are going to or finishing college, you are prompted to remember the dreams you had when you were their age. You long for that ability to face the future with such vibrancy and freedom.
i’m not sure about the next 60’s on up. I’m not there…yet!
But what happens if at any point along the way- life would end unexpectedly. What if you die? at 94, or 68, or 27, 15 or maybe 8?
I know we don’t like to think about things like that. But I’ve recently been reminded again that we don’t know when our life ends.
So what if i have a year to live?
What difference would that knowledge make in how I live that year?
What clarity would the urgency bring to the plans I made of the next 365 days?
The amazing thing is at each stage of life we have a new platform for perspective on life.
Maybe it comes through hard work, perseverance and consistency.
Maybe it comes through pain, or loss, or despair.
Maybe it comes through celebration, and accomplishment and productivity.
Chances are ALL the above are true in some way or another.But often ALL gets in the way of being who we were meant to be; of seeing what we really want to… Click To Tweet
But often ALL gets in the way of being who we were meant to be; of seeing what we really want to see.
We lose sight of the relationships that are most important.
We get caught up pursuing a dream that becomes the MAIN thing, but lose sight of WHY we had the dream and WHO the dream was meant to serve.
August is a time of year when I stop to reflect on what I want to be about. Mostly because 9 years ago this month, my 15 year old daughter died full of life and dreams and plans. She died wanting to influence.
In my last conversation with her that afternoon, I was teasing her about her urgency to get her driver’s permit. I jokingly said, “Honey, you just want power!”
After just a little reflection she said, “Mom, I don’t need power. I want to influence. I want to say to people, ‘I’m going, come with me!”
She died 10 minutes later.
Her legacy to me were those words. No matter what stage of life i am in, I want to influence.
Can I say “I’m going?”
And just where am I going? Is it that place that I would invite others to join me as well?
If I died tonight, what would you say about me? What would others say about you?
What is the next thing you want to be true of you? Are you moving toward that- or away from it?
Life may be shorter than you think! Let’s make the most of the time we have!
What influence do you want to have? What difference will you make?Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom. - Psalm 90:12 Click To Tweet
PS. I found this video just after I wrote this post! Powerful reminder I can use my emotions, fears, and failures to Be Better!
Listen in! Then leave a comment and let me know what you think! I may not be the only one who needs your encouragement today!
Posted by Erin Cunningham on Monday, May 18, 2015