Yesterday was one of those mile-long-list days. You know, the days where your to-do list seems impossible to fit into 24 hours, let alone the mere 18 or so I’m actually awake. Well, yesterday was one of those days.
And because the kids are still on summer break, they got dragged along with me. At the start of the day, my list looked something like this:
- Meet with client to close out project and get paid!
- Pick up weekly crop-share at farm
- Pick up x-ray from dentist to take to orthodontist
- Drop off certified letter at post office
- Pick up new contact lens from eye doctor
- Make deposit at bank
- Make withdrawal at bank to pay last week’s pet sitter
- Take 11-year-old to Claire’s to spend birthday gift card (that is burning a hole in her pocket)
- Drop off overdue library books
- Take 11-year-old to orthodontist appointment
- Coach soccer practice
Somewhere in the middle of that list, I got a phone call from a client. “Were you just at the eye doctor’s office?” he asked.
“Yes,” I responded, somewhat distracted, “did I pass you in the parking lot?”
“No,” he countered, somewhat shocked, “I was sitting two chairs away from you in the waiting area, waving to get your attention, but you never responded.”
Ummm. Really? Yes, really.
If this were the first time this had happened, I could easily chock it up to a busy day. But unfortunately, it’s not. Twice in the past few weeks, my sister has called me on my cell to say she just passed me on the road between our houses (which is a small, two-lane road through a housing community). Each time she waved at me, and each time I didn’t respond.
Wow. Am I that out-of-it? Am I that focused on what’s going to happen next, that I miss what is happening now? I once read that all too often we “go through the day rather than getting something from the day. We are everywhere at any given moment in time except living in that moment in time.”
I think this is a form of worry, which is ultimately a sinful part of my nature. I mean, it’s one thing to be a planner (everyone knows I am definitely a planner), but it’s another to let your plans for tomorrow take away from your living of today. Haven’t we been warned against borrowing trouble from another day? (Yup.)
I’m not advocating carelessness or recklessness, but rather living responsibly within the moments we are given, so as not to squander them with worries about the future or any other meaningless drivel we all-to-often fill our moments with.
I clearly missed out on an opportunity to talk with my client during the ten minutes we sat near each other in that waiting room. What else did I miss during that time? My kids were with me… but was I really paying attention to them? I’m ashamed to say I was focused almost entirely on my to-do list, and how much I would be able to squeeze into the afternoon.
Those items will eventually get checked off my list, whether or not I obsess over them, so I might as well use the waiting time (of which there was plenty that day) to soak up my surroundings… especially my family and those around me right now. After all, this is where God has me right now. I need to stay focused on His plans for today, or I might miss something big. 🙂