Perspective and Little Annoyances

I don’t know about you, but I can get upset at the dumbest things.
Today, I was driving home from the gym, and I saw an emergency vehicle swashing near my home. Sometimes my husband heads out to the gym after me. For a moment, I just stopped, and I was like, “Lord, I hope he’s not in that accident.”
We are so foolish when the only thing we have in front of our eyes is temporal crap. We are so full of it. We can get so frustrated over the dishes or running water. But yet, in a blink of an eye, our loved one may not be present to run the water or leave dishes in the sink or smack our ear or hug us. We take for granted that they are going to be there tomorrow, the next day, and the next day. We can be so mad over the dumbest things.
For example, with my husband, I get frustrated because he is defensive. If I talk to him about anything, he automatically defends himself instead of pausing and processing what I say and then talking back to me and giving me a logical statement. I can become so frustrated—but then I am not carrying the love of God. I know the minute I see an emergency vehicle and pray to God it’s not him, the defensiveness does not even matter. I clearly love the man.
If I could keep in mind the eternal perspective that life is short—it’s merely a breath—can you imagine how differently I would respond? How I would respond differently today?
I would like to challenge you today to live with this in mind: What if your loved one, your spouse, or your friend were gone tomorrow in a blink? Is there anything you would do differently? Is there any word you have said but would take back? Is there any pet peeve you would stop nitpicking on? Is there any little thing in which you use your words to tear down but would turn around and build the person up instead? Is there someone you would hug more today? Someone you would call and tell them you love them? Don’t hesitate—do it.
The next time you are frustrated about something minute, pause and picture in your mind an ambulance picking them up off the ground, and then see if you want to say something about it.

How I Get Things Done, Part 1

I’m often asked a question that stumps me. Even my closest friends ask this: “How do you get so much accomplished? You are so busy. You have such little time to get so much done.” I’m going to tell you a bit about that.

I was raised in a home that displayed an extreme work ethic. My mother worked hard all the days of her life. She was faithful, committed, and timely. She had an extreme character and work ethic. Her yes meant yes, and her no meant no. She taught me that.
I worked hard since my first job when I turned sixteen years old. After I started my first job, it was only a matter of weeks before I became a supervisor. On my next job, the same thing happened. I was head of the movie theater I worked at. In my next job, I was a sales clerk at Wal-Mart, and within a matter of two months, I was promoted to customer service manager because of my work ethic.
If you allow your yes to mean yes and your no to mean no, you are able to dig in and do hard work. Roll up your sleeves. Be present. Show up. Be reliable. Do what you say you are going to do. Work hard. You will see the fruits of your labor.
From the time I was young, my mom was always so relational and fun. She wasn’t a hugger or a toucher. I think that’s because her dad died at a young age and her mom didn’t really raise her children in demonstrative relationships. They were less touchy-feely. But she loved people. She invested in people. She was a light where she went, with a smile on her face and the fun she brought.
She taught me how to do the same. I was one of those people at one point or another. I was a light. I was funny. I shared stuff. I gave things away. I blessed people because she taught me to do so. Because of this, in every place I worked, people liked me. I was enjoyable. I encouraged others. I spoke life into people. At this point, I don’t even think I knew life and death were on my tongue. Yet, I spoke life.
When I went to work at an accounting firm when I graduated from college, every single client I had offered me a job to work with them. It was first and foremost because of my work ethic. I would work until I solved the problem in front of me.
The second most important thing was that I was relational. I treated everyone from the janitor to the president as if they were valuable. It didn’t matter what their role was. I saw them as a person who had value. My clients recognized this. They recognized I love people.
What burns my flame every single day is I don’t want to waste a day of my life because I don’t have enough of them left. I don’t want any single person to feel unloved. I used to feel rejected and excluded every day. I don’t want people to feel the same way. I want them to know they are valued, I value them, and they are loved.
Those are the two things that drive me. The reason I do ministry, whether it’s small or large, is because of those two reasons. I know I’m called to look at the ant and not be a lazy sluggard. I have so much to give. God has given me so much that I have no choice but to give it back out to people so they will know how truly loved they are. They are included, they are part of God’s family, and there is no rejection of man that can overcome the love of God. This is what drives me.