We all have people in our lives we love… I’m not talking about good friends or people we enjoy hanging out with, although within this group there may be people we love. I’m talking about people who in themselves make up a piece of our own soul. If we were to ever lose them, we would lose a piece of who we are, a piece of our own self.
For me these people are my wife, my two little girls, my sister, and my parents. If I were to lose any of them, I would be changed on the inside forever. The scary part of life, is that I will probably experience this loss one day. I can’t change that fact, or do anything about it. It is one of the few things in life we are powerless to change – instead we can only accept it as beyond our control.
It is because of this simple truth that we should take every opportunity available to experience life with the ones we love. This can be a weekend getaway, a dinner out with your spouse, a breakfast date with your 4 year old daughter, a family vacation, or just quality time with your parents. Simply put, life is all about enjoying and being with those we love…
The Danger… Taking those we Love for Granted.
For me, it is very easy to forget this truth, which is why I need to hear it often. The busyness of life tempts me to skip that important phone call or neglect to make the plans I should, in order to communicate my affection for those I love. Sometimes I can be caught “drifting”, instead of “planning” and taking action with my time. It is one of my own personal flaws that I consciously try to avoid and have to actually strategize against it.
The problem with this flaw, is that if I “drift” instead of “plan”, I end of taking those I love for granted by letting the busyness of life take over my schedule. It is not purposeful, but is due to a lack of being intentional. Before I know it I’ve missed out on valuable time that I can never get back.
The Solution… Be Intentional
The only solution I’ve found to this danger of taking those we love for granted, is to be intentional. We need to be intentional with our time and intentional with our focus.
By time, I mean that we need to plan time with those we love. Time that is set aside for the purpose of getting to know those we love more deeply. It can be a joint activity, or just time to simply talk (like family dinners) – either way it is done intentionally so as to not miss the opportunity to strengthen the relationship.
There really is no shortcut for this. Time is a valuable resource and once lost, cannot be recovered. If you are like me, and have endless priorities – there is no substitute for being intentional and planning out your time for what is most valuable.
The second point is to be intentional with our focus. We can be with someone, but not really be with someone. Technology has been beneficial to all of our lives, but has done great hindrance here due to its endless distractions. At least it has for me.
It’s important to keep our focus when we are with those we love. Yes, this means putting away the smartphone and staying on target. (Believe me, I’m the worst culprit here)
Otherwise we risk doing more damage than good to our relationships.
Frankly, it can be better to spend no time with someone, than be with someone and have zero interest in that person, because we are constantly focusing on something else. Believe me, you can’t fool people you love. They will know it.
What this means for me…
If you are reading this article the week I published it, than I’m in the middle of a seven day trip with my Dad. We will be in the mountains of Colorado, riding horses, fly fishing, and having a great time together. I’ve never taken a trip like this before where it is just the two of us, so I am revved up for an amazing experience.
This being said, although I’m excited about Colorado, I’m most excited for the quality time I’ll get with just my dad and I. Since we live 2000 miles apart, it is time we rarely get except through a passing phone call.
I’m certain I’ll look back on this trip for years to come and reminisce on the great times together… Since it is time that I can never get back, there was no way I was going to miss it.
Ask the Readers, how are you being intentional with your time this week? Do you need to set aside time to strengthen a relationship with someone you love? Don’t wait, be intentional.