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A Matter of Time
I bought an hourglass several years ago and I keep it on my desk to make me mindful of time. I often tilt it over when I’m thinking to watch the sand pour through. This morning as I watch Graphic came from the Jewish Journa Blog the trickling sand, I’m reminded once again how brief our vacation on earth really is, and that life is truly a matter of time.

I read a book once called “Your Money or Your Life” that pointed out just how finite time is. The average man in America can expect to live to be about 75 ½ which is around 661,380 hours. The average female normally lives an additional 43,800 hours. The idea behind the book is; how many hours of your life are you giving up to buy “stuff”? Cars, jewelry, shoes and big houses? When I did the math, the numbers were sobering.

Everyone has to earn a living, unless you are born into money. But some folks live beyond their means, and spend too much of their lives trying to keep their heads above water.

It’s a proven fact that “stuff” doesn’t make you happy. Spending time with the people you love, or doing things that make you stronger, smarter, and better, do tend to make you happier.

My mama and daddy spent a chunk time with us kids. When we were in school, Mama would set up the ironing board in the kitchen and iron clothes while watching us do our homework. She could spot check our work and never miss a wrinkle. I think they went to every Christmas play, little league game, or fall festival we were in.

They understood that it was only a matter of time before we grew up and left the nest for a life of our own.

Likewise, my grandparents who lived next door for much of my life, invested a great deal of time in us kids. If I asked one question, I asked a million. I don’t think it ever occurred to them to say, “Not now son, I’m busy and don’t have the time.”

Do you ever wonder why some people are successful at running businesses, raising families, and life in general? Or why some people are phenomenal guitar players, dancers, preachers, teachers, or athletes? There is usually talent involved with each of these callings, but perhaps the biggest factor is time.

Successful people devote the time to attain the life they desire. Musicians spend countless hours of practice, doing mundane scales, riffs, and study before becoming accomplished performers. The difference between mediocrity and brilliance is measured by the hands of time.

So many people spend valuable time on unimportant things. Once those grains of sand pass through the hourglass, you can never get them back.

A very good friend of mine who had a run-in with cancer a few years ago, told me that she no longer spends time with people she doesn't like.

During her professional career, she attended functions and gatherings with people she didn't know. After a short time, she realized she didn't want to know them. "It's not that they were bad people," she explained "they just wanted different things from life.

I made a decision to spend the time I have left with people I enjoy being around."

These days she spends quality time tending her garden and her animals. She visits with her friends. She reads. She drinks green tea in the afternoon while watching yellow and purple finches on the feeders in her yard. The time she spends in stillness seems to make her stronger.
I thought about my friend as I watched the sand slipping through the hourglass today and I understand her appreciation for every passing moment.


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