Thursday, July 9, 2015

Time In

I have been thinking a lot, lately, about the value of time. Not just my time, but time in general. The older I get, the less there is of it, the more demand there is on it, and the more I wish that I could purchase a few extra hours a week. Of course, time is a lot like space. If you have it, you will fill it, and not necessarily with things that make life better. 

So in the interest of making life better, I am examining the ways that I am spending my time, and also the things that I do that take up time, but really aren't worth it, and don't add to the well being of my home and family. 

My focus has always been on the people in my life and the places that we inhabit. My home, my church, the lives of the people closest to me. However, how many times have I been unable to be there or to attend to the people that I care about because of things that I am trying to do that aren't going to mean anything to anyone two days from now? How many times have I passed off a chance to make a meal or have a visit with a friend, because I am attending to some business or other that really isn't important?

I wrote a while ago about how important it is to be present to someone, in a real way, every day. 
That has been wonderful! I have been making a much better effort to really see people, to ask questions, and to try to see things from where they are coming from. To smile, and mean it, when I am out shopping or having a conversation. To not always be thinking about the next place that I have to be, or the things that I have to do, but be more in the moment. 

It's not easy, and it requires discipline that I don't always have. I have been a busy person a long time. I am really enjoying the effort though!

Giving people time is really like giving them a prized possession. Maybe that's why when you do it, and mean it, they really know you care. 

Thursday, July 2, 2015

My Time With My Friend....

....was the highlight of my day.

Well, one of them. There were actually quite a few.

I have taken a bunch of the apps off my phone, to save the battery, and so when I got up I didn't reach for it to check Facebook, I just went downstairs to my prayers and treadmill. Started off the day with my usual workout, but no input from facebook, or email. That's actually really nice.

I drove John to Bel Air for an appointment, but then spent an hour reading my book. Most enjoyable!

I came home, and I was working, which is a computer based activity right now, unfortunately, but then after I stopped for the day, I came out to start dinner and my friend Christine came by with her kids! We had a very nice visit while I was cooking. It was so great to just talk about so many things. Her dad's health, our kids, our plans...just everything.

We had a nice family dinner, and we had Lilly here! She had dinner and then we read a bit of "Little House in the Big Woods". She is really excited about how many books are in the series.

Lilly and Tim took a walk with Maggie and then they built a model house!

Some really good stuff!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Disconnecting and Reconnecting

This blog has become kind of stealthy, since I took a really long break from blogging, because of the time and energy that it took. It's kind of interesting though, because I really don't have any idea who might be reading it, if anyone, but I still have a place to put thoughts, when I have them, which these days is rare.

I was thinking, earlier today, about how social media in general, and Facebook in particular, has lately become just a place to bludgeon your contacts, friends or not, with your opinions and your brand of "social commentary". Everyone is displaying their flavor; sharing articles, pictures, anecdotes and memes. Everybody is so positive that they are right, and that all that they are posting is part of a conversation. Whatever the controversy of the day may be, there is little conversing and much wailing and gnashing of teeth. It's become a tad ridiculous.

I was tempted a few times to join in and add my 2 cents, but why? No one is reading it, no one is listening, and no one really cares about the Truth. The Truth is above that particular venue, and I am thinking that maybe instead of trying to break into hearts and minds behind a screen, it's time to sit down with a few real hearts and minds, face to face. One to one. At least it is for me.

Yesterday, for instance, I took some bread that I had made, went next door to visit our elderly neighbor, and had a really nice visit. I hadn't been to see him yet, and I was so glad to be able to see him smile. Yeah, his mind comes and goes, but he seems really happy. And I enjoyed talking to his son, who has uprooted from a home and state that he really loved to come back to Maryland and be here with his dad in his last years.  And it was just a very nice visit.

I have also reconnected with a good friend who had moved away, and is now back in the area. Sitting down, and having a long visit, and talking about the kids, our homes, our school journeys, and so many other things, it just felt so real and good. We weren't getting together to accomplish anything. We didn't have an agenda. But we needed that time.

I need to be part of that world more intentionally. I need time with people. Face to Face. One to one. How can I testify to the Truth if I am always running, seeking, typing, feeding a digital habit?

I am going to make it a goal, for the rest of the Summer, to try to sit down once a day, even just for a few minutes and with a person, for no reason other than to learn something about them. What do they think? What are they struggling with? What are they celebrating?

I was always a people person. I guess technology has gotten to me, kind of pulled me in and separated me from the herd, so to speak. It's no way to live.

We'll see what I have to share along the way.