“Things that matter most in our lives must never be at the mercy of things that matter least. ~ Milton K.
Easter season is upon us and we are easily reminded especially when shopping. It is then we are bombarded with a sea of rainbow grass, a huge assortment of chocolate eggs and
sky-high towers of colorful wicker baskets. The Easter Bunny and his enormous stash of sugary loot has certainly taken on very high importance in our society. It is sad however how many people miss the true meaning of Easter altogether, which is Christ’s death and resurrection. One particular Easter when I was teaching Sunday School, I had the lesson to teach about Mary and Martha at the tomb of Jesus. Before I told the story, I was well prepared and started my discussion about what Easter is really about. I was on a mission and with great enthusiasm I laid it on thick. I described in detail how chocolate bunnies are wonderful, but there is so much more to what Easter is really about. I felt like Linus in Charlie Brown’s Christmas when he takes center stage. In the spotlight he delivers a life changing monologue and enlightens his friends to what the true meaning of Christmas really is. I went on with gusto to tell the story of Mary and Martha and how they were at the tomb. I described with precision how they were so sad about their special friend Jesus who had died. They did not know that He would perform a special miracle and rise from the dead at that particular time. I had their attention. You could hear a pin drop and I was so proud. When I asked if someone could share what the lesson was about and summarize what I was trying to say, one little boy quickly volunteered. He said boldly “I agree with you about Easter so much! It is not about the chocolate bunnies at all! It is really about the chocolate eggs and just so you know, I think the real reason why Mary and Martha were upset is because they lost their chocolate bunnies!” True story! What? Talk about a let down and unfortunately a little boy who despite my greatest efforts and best intentions clearly did not get it. Not one of my best teaching moments that is for sure, but a very comical story none the less. He did not see what really mattered most much to my dismay!
I have to laugh about this story though because we are like that in life sometimes. We listen, but do we really hear? Do we realize what really matters most? One day I was teaching a lesson on childhood obesity and one little girl chimed in and said she found the lesson very interesting and that she could not wait to share with her parents what she had learned. I asked her “And what did you learn?” She proudly said grinning from ear to ear, “I learned that Mrs. R. taught us a great lesson on how not to be obedient!” YIKES! I quickly cleared up that vocabulary mix up let me tell you! Kids do say the funniest things and provide me with some of the greatest chuckles indeed, yet another case of someone not quite getting what matters most.
Many adults miss the point too. I was watching TV today and there was a show called My Crazy Obsession and this couple had a collection of over 5000 cabbage patch kids. This alone may not seem that bad to avid collectors, but when they spoke of how they talk for their dolls, set up play dates and take them on errands, I knew there was a big problem. It is great to have a hobby or interest, yet when it dominates your life and hurts relationships, there is a huge issue here. There is so much more to life than that, yet they failed to see it! Their hobby mattered most and that is very sad.
On the flip side, there are the people who totally get it. They clearly have their priorities in life very straight. They know what is truly important. They know what matters most and they inspire others to do the same. One such person who inspires me very much on a daily basis is a mom named Tara McCallan who has started a website and blog called Happy Soul Project. On this blog she shares her very honest experiences about being a mom to two “hooligans” as she affectionately calls them named Noal and Pip. Pip has Down Syndrome and has been getting much notoriety and spreading great joy to many through this blog. Tara openly speaks of celebrating life’s little moments and realizing it is our differences that make us all such special people. Her blog’s recent entry entitled “33 Things I Know to Be True That Have Helped Make My Life Special” really captures what is truly important in life. Amongst the wonderful items on the list are being honest, saying thank you and being truly grateful for the life you have been given. Simple truths, but so important for all of us to grasp! Thank you Tara for the laughs, reality checks and reminders of what is most important! Please check out her blog at www.happysoulproject.com, as you will be very inspired and will really enjoy the pics of her adorable children as well!
Daily I want to strive to be someone who “gets it” too. Life is too short to do otherwise. It is people who matter most and we need to acknowledge that. We can get so easily distracted with other things. We wear many hats and get very skilled at juggling so many responsibilities, yet at the end of the day the people we love the most still need us. Other aspects of our lives are extremely important to keep in balance as well. A great book I read was called Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas by James Patterson. In this novel it talks of the 5 balls we are juggling and what is really most important. It says “Imagine life is a game in which you are juggling five balls. The balls are called work, family, health, friends and integrity. And you’re keeping all of them in the air. But one day you come to understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls… are made of glass. If you drop one of these, it will be irrevocably scuffed, nicked, perhaps even shattered.” Our careers are very important indeed, but must take their proper place in the priorities line up. I found this quote very enlightening.
Sometimes we need to look at things in our everyday lives and ask ourselves does this really matter? Are we really grasping what life is truly about? Is this really all there is? God wants us to so “get it.” He wants us to place a relationship with Him high on our list of priorities because He loves us so much. It says in His word: For I know the plans I have for you “declares the Lord” plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. It is God’s plan for us to see what is most precious in our lives like His direction, marriage, children, friends and family and to lovingly protect those relationships. He wants us to prosper and have a positive, fulfilled, and meaningful future. Time goes so quickly and we do not want to have regrets. The good thing is it is never too late for a fresh start. Our priorities can become mixed up easily even sometimes for the best reasons, yet we can all find our way back if we want to. If you are in this category, take a good hard look at your life and ask yourself what do you need to change? Is there any activities that you need to discontinue right now? Are there ways you need to simplify your life to free up time for the things that matter most? Taking inventory like this is so healthy and empowering for us. I encourage everyone to do this regularly to make sure that our lives stay in the proper balance. Tomorrow is a new day and another wonderful opportunity to celebrate the things in life we most value and are truly thankful for. Don’t forget it.
Jeremiah 29:11 ~ For I know the plans I have for you “declares the Lord” plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.
Little Lesson Learned: Sometimes we miss the point of what matters most. If that happens, acknowledge it, refocus and move forward. A fresh start is awaiting you and it is never too late to “get it.”
Copyright: Littlelessonslearnedbydana, 2014