Do You Need to Reassess Your Priorities?
In my life I have found many things. As a boy I once found a beautiful
soccer ball in the park just down the road from our home in
Sydney. When I arrived home with the ball, my mother inquired
as to where it had come from. I told her I had found it. She asked,
“Where did you find it?” and I told her, “Down at the park.” Then
she said to me, “Did it occur to you that someone might come
back for it, or that the person who has lost it is very sad right now?”
She paused and then continued, “How would you feel if that was
your soccer ball and you had lost it?”
I sat in a big green armchair in the corner of the dining room
with the ball grasped to my chest while a few minutes of that
deadly silence passed—the silence that even as a child you know
means you have done something not altogether right. My mother
kept about her business in the kitchen, preparing dinner, and then,
knowing she had given me just enough time to think about the situation,
said, “I think you should take the ball back to the park now
and leave it where you found it.”
After that I found other things. One day I found a watch, and
at a carnival once I found $50. But I have never found time. It just
never happens. Sometimes people ask us, “When are you going to
do this?” or, “When are you going to do that?” I have discovered
that when my reply to these questions is, “When I find time!” I
never do those things. I never find that time. Even as a child I
learned quickly that from the moment we are born into this life
and placed on this planet, there is more to do than can ever be
done, more to see than can ever be seen, and if something is important,
we must make time.
We must decide what is really important, really necessary,
make it a priority, and make time. Otherwise the siren call of the
world will always keep us busy and distracted from what really is
important. What really counts?
There is a short prayer that I like to use often during the day,
particularly during busy times: “God, help me to see that so few
things are really important and to at least take care of these first.”
Our priorities should not be based on a material goal. Rather,
we should use our time and our talents to develop our whole person.
Our own development should be our top priority. When we
are fully alive, in every way, striving toward perfection, we experience
the profound joy of life.
Finding the rhythm of life is largely about reassessing our priorities
and reallocating our resources and energies according to
those new priorities. The result is the whole person, a person fully
alive, striving to grow, develop, and perfect the various aspects of
From The Rhythm of Life
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