Friday, January 2, 2015

Carpe Diem

Happy new year and congratulations on making it into 2015!!!

There were many tragedies that occurred in 2014, which brought home to a lot of people that life is very fleeting and none of us is guaranteed tomorrow or the even the certainty that we have come to expect we can create by doing the right things.

I have been thinking a lot about 2015 and I believe and need this to be a year of drastic change for me. Drastic change in how I manage my time and my resources, what I spend my time doing and also drastic change with respect to self-care. It was with this state of mind that I stumbled on Tim Ferriss blogpost from 2009 titled "On The Shortness of Life- An Introduction to Seneca."

Below are some of the quotes from Seneca that really resonate with me:

"The greatest hindrance to living is expectancy, which depends upon the morrow and wastes to-day."
"It is not that we have a short space of time, but that we waste much of it. Life is long enough, and it has been given in sufficiently generous measure to allow the accomplishment of the very greatest things if the whole of it is well invested."
"In guarding their fortune men are often closefisted, yet, when it comes to the matter of wasting time, in the case of the one thing in which it is right to be miserly, they show themselves most prodigal."
"You will hear many men saying: "After my fiftieth year I shall retire into leisure, my sixtieth year shall release me from public duties." And what guarantee, pray, have you that your life will last longer? Who will suffer your course to be just as you plan it? Are you not ashamed to reserve for yourself only the remnant of life, and to set apart for wisdom only that time which cannot be devoted to any business? How late it is to begin to live just when we must cease to live! What foolish forgetfulness of mortality to postpone wholesome plans to the fiftieth and sixtieth year, and to intend to begin life at a point to which few have attained!"
I have also added some further quotes which make the same points as the Saneca quotes above.
"One day at a time – this is enough. Do not look back and grieve over the past, for it is gone: and do not be troubled about the future, for it has not yet come. Live in the present, and make it so beautiful that it will be worth remembering." - Ida Scott Taylor
"Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money." Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, "If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that." As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil. Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins." - James
"Nobody sees a flower – really – it is so small it takes time – we haven’t time –and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time." Georgia O’Keefe
"Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend." - Diogenes
"Every man dies – Not every man really lives."
William Ross Wallace
"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming —WOW–What a Ride!!!" (author unknown)

Ecclesiastes 3:8 ESV
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.
While I do not really agree with the totality of the ways in which Saneca and some of the quoted recommend spending time, there is a lot of truth in those quotes I have reproduced above.

While guarding your time "as preciously as your money", it is important to keep the eternal in perspective and to remember that each individual was sent to earth to fulfill a certain purpose. If you do not know your "why" - your purpose, it is a worthy exercise to spend time in finding out and asking for revelation into what the purpose of your life is or should be.

Here is what Jesus said about time management and some other quotes from the bible on time.

John 9:4 ESV
We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work.
2 Corinthians 4:18
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Ephesians 5:15-17 ESV
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
It is one thing to know that we should spend our time wisely, on our God given purpose, it is another thing entirely to be disciplined enough to actually do so and to get rid of all the dead weight and unnecessary baggage and encumberment.
Remember, the greatest tragedy is not death, but a life lived without purpose. ( Paraphrasing Dr Myles Munroe)
To end this post, I will quote Horace, in the part of his poem from which the title of my post "Carpe Diem" ( seize the day) comes:
"While we speak, envious time will have {already} fled:
seize the day, trusting as little as possible in the next day."

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