As I write this I am aware that some of my friends and colleagues have faced hurricanes and earthquakes over the past few weeks. I am grateful that none of their lives were lost or injured. Houses can be rebuilt and furniture replaced. Please continue to keep them in your prayers as they rebuild.
I continue to be amazed at how this year is unfolding. New opportunities present themselves in ways that I never expected coming into January. As some of my friends seem to be gearing down for their retirement years, it seems like my life is gearing up. I am finding each day engaging, each step rewarding and each possibility enlightening.
So how do I personally meet the amazing challenges before me? How do I stay “in the game” so that at the end of the day I can say that I have done what was before me, with the God-given zeal and strength that each day affords. I do this three ways;
First, work hard. By this I do not mean frenetic activity that is like the proverbial headless chicken, going fast but nowhere in particular. It means to create a plan for my life and work my plan. Each day I lay out for myself the activities of the day. I divide my page into two. On the right side I list my work-related activities. For me, it’s the oversight of Foundation for Missions Canada/Hands for Humanity. There are people to contact, emails to send, reports to complete, monies to transfer and so on. As I complete the tasks I place a check mark beside each. If the task is left undone, I move it forward to the next day until it is completed. This way I avoid slippage or getting caught in the tyranny of the urgent, which is often crisis management.
On the left side I list my personal goals, such as blogging or writing my next book. I also love to do auctions, where I can find items to flip on ebay or other social sites. My narrow world has expanded tremendously as I research art, collectibles, furniture and so on. The issue is to find your passion and then create a plan around it. It is not a challenge for me to move into my passions. It’s more of finding the time to do absolutely everything I love to do.
Secondly, pray much. It’s not so much that I need God to do for me what I should be doing. It’s that there are those moments of divine inspiration, those “ah ha” moments that come in the times of prayer. “Have you thought about this? What about trying it this way?” My goal, my heart’s desire is to remain teachable and pliable as I continue my journey through life. The last thing I want is to be a cantankerous old man who finds fault with everything and everyone. Prayer is certainly not a crutch for irresponsibility. It keeps me centered on my life’s purpose and enables me to achieve such.
Finally, stay focused. There are so many distractions that can fritter away the time, that can cause me to deviate from my goals. That’s why it brings me back to number one, plan my work and work my plan. For me the challenge is never to choose between what’s best for my life or not. The challenge is to stay focused on my priorities for life and let the insignificant go, even those things that may seem luring or inviting but will not add to my life’s purpose.
“Work as if it all depended on you. Pray as if it all depended on God” (John Wesley) and stay focused.on your life’s goals.