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Between all the “have tos” in life is this precious substance called time.
Time is finite. Only 24 hours per day. 7 days per week. 52 weeks per year.
Time is not guaranteed. You do not know how many of these 24 hour days you’ll have.
So each of those days has so much value.
Yet we groan every Monday and beg for Friday to roll around. I’m just as guilty, believe me. I love the freedom of my weekends. Sleeping in. Alone time. Bliss.
Being introverted…I NEED alone time. And trust me when I say all y’all around me should cheer that I take alone time. I’m nicer as a result. 😉
But quality time with my people is priceless and delicious, and I need that too. I feel loved and show love by giving people my time. I do my very best to have one on one time with each of my nieces and nephews. To pour into them. To listen to them. To find out who they are and see where I can support, encourage, or dream with them. I find out how to pray for them. And let’s face it…they are a blast those kids. Seriously fun. I love them. More than they can possibly imagine.
Quality time doesn’t have to be long periods of time. But you do need to be engaged with the other person. Focused on them. Not the tv. Not your phone. Not social media. But actively listening and talking with the other person.
Quality time can be as simple as taking a walk with a friend. I miss the Walkie Talkies I used to have with my friend Kate (I moved so we are several states away now), and the deep meandering discussions I had with my friend Rachel on our walks together. Quality time can be going to breakfast the same time every week for decades, like my Papa did with his big brother, Bob. Quality time can also be a weekend away or a road trip.
But here’s the tough part about quality time, we simply do not have enough time in the day to give quality time to every single person we know. It is physically impossible. So with limited resource of time and the 2 commandments of Jesus (loving God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength and loving our neighbor as ourselves), how can we best invest our quality time?
Well…the best example of time management was a man who only lived for 33 years on this earth. His name is Jesus. Jesus loved with all that He had. He knew how to be a servant. He spoke words of life. He gave the ultimate gift. His touch healed every single person that He touched. Literally every single one. And He understood how to balance His time.
He rested, and invested in Himself with alone time. He spent time with the Father. These two things are essential if you want to have anything to give to anyone else. Quality time with yourself + Quality time with Father God = A Filled Up You. Therefore, a better you at work, school, or where you “have to” go every day. If Jesus couldn’t love the World without alone time and God time, neither can you.
A filled up Jesus was then capable of pouring the love He received from the Father out into the world. Jesus loved everyone He encountered. But it was the love He first received from the Father.
But despite this, Jesus did not invest quality time in every single person He encountered. And neither can you. No matter how much time you spend receiving from God.
Jesus invested His time into 12. Out of the whole world, 12.
But the majority of his quality time was reserved for 3 people. 3.
Remember that when you’re scheduling out your time. Who are the people in your circle who are the top priority? A friend in crisis? Your kids? Your spouse? Your inner circle of friends? A person who you’re mentoring? Who ever those chosen few may be, don’t forget to carve out some of your precious time for them. Quality time=love.
Point to ponder while you wander…Papa God is all about quality time with us. He asks us to seek Him, then promises that He’ll show up every time. And He’ll fill you with His love. He’ll reveal who He is, and give us help with our day. What He did for Jesus, He’ll do for you.
When ever I listen to Billy Joel, I’m like man oh man…I love Billy Joel. The song that got me this time was Leningrad.
The lyrics are poignant poetry…take a gander…
Viktor was born in the spring of ’44
And never saw his father anymore
A child of sacrifice, a child of war
Another son who never had a father after Leningrad
Went off to school and learned to serve the state
Followed the rules and drank his vodka straight
The only way to live was drown the hate
A Russian life was very sad
And such was life in Leningrad
I was born in ’49
A cold war kid in McCarthy time
Stop ’em all at the 38th Parallel
Blast those yellow reds to hell
And cold war kids were hard to kill
Under their desks in an air raid drill
Haven’t they heard we won the war
What do they keep on fighting for?
Viktor was sent to some Red Army town
Served out his time, became a circus clown
The greatest happiness he’d ever found
Was making Russian children glad
And children lived in Leningrad
But children lived in Levittown
And hid in the shelters underground
Until the Soviets turned their ships around
And tore the Cuban missiles down
And in that bright October sun
We knew our childhood days were done
And I watched my friends go off to war
What do they keep on fighting for?
And so my child and I came to this place
To meet him eye to eye and face to face
He made my daughter laugh, then we embraced
We never knew what friends we had
Until we came to Leningrad
Point to ponder while you wander…
With so much ideological hating going on in the world…this song reminded me to remember this….”We never knew what friends we had Until we came to Leningrad”
I detest some of the ideologies out there in the world too. I am not ignorant of the violence and destruction. But the people are still God’s creation, that He loves. So pray big and be kind.
This is a beautiful song sung by Rascal Flatts, called “I’m Moving On”
This song just hits home in so many ways. It’s about accepting that the past happened, dealing with it and moving forward. So many, too many, people get stuck and get paralyzed it seems.
The line that really got me was, “They mean me no harm but it’s time that I face it, they’ll never allow me to change.” There were people in my life I had to distance myself from and some I even had to say goodbye to because they just kept trying to pull me back to where I didn’t want to be anymore. They weren’t necessarily bad people, but I found myself struggling to hang on to the positive changes I’d made. So I had to let them go.
A few of those people eventually came back into my life, but most didn’t. I call those “friend shifts.” When either you or they change and you just don’t have anything in common anymore. It’s okay to let people go. It’s okay to move on. It’s a part of the growth process.
Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend [to show rage or worthy purpose]. Proverbs 27:17 AMP
Today I’m just grateful for those friends who’ve challenged me go grow, called me out in love when I needed it and have been there for me when things were hard.
I love you.
That’s all today.
- Friends Sharpen the Minds of Friends (lindseydbriggs.wordpress.com)