Weekly Thought – June 17, 2014
Fred read slowly and carefully. He carefully digested every line, writing notes in the margins of all his books. Fred perused books for key ideas often outlining them on the inside cover so reviews could be made without rereading. He believed reading, travel, and association were keys to personal and professional success.
Fred’s book Leading With Integrity is a practical approach to a critical topic. An attractive packet of Integrity Cards is now available for a gift of $10 or more to BWF. For more information, please contact Brenda@breakfastwithfred.com They make a great platform for individual or group study.
Day by Day
Life has thrown you a curve and you want to pull the covers over your head. Or maybe you go into a manic “futurism” exercise. The prospects of tomorrow hold much more appeal than the painful realities of today. Where does perseverance fit in?
One of the most interesting little books I repeatedly review is A Way of Life by Dr. William Osler. He admonishes us to live in “day-tight compartments.” This tiny volume is a talk delivered to the students at Yale. He addressed them as “fellow students:” to emphasize the life-long search for knowledge. He told them, “When I was attending the Montreal General Hospital, much worried as to the future, partly about the final examination, partly as to what I should afterwards, I picked up a volume of Carlyle and saw ;Our business is not to see what lies dimly at a distance, but to do what lies clearly at hand. It was the starting point of a habit that has enabled me to utilize to the full the simple talent entrusted to me.” Osler showed me today is my only day.
I was invited to speak to a prestigious women’s group in a large metropolitan area. Before the meeting began I sat down next to the president who was a stylish young career woman. “You and I are the same age,” I commented. “Have we invited a totally senile man to be our keynote speaker?” I could see her mind whirring. Then I said, “Do you have yesterday?” “No – ” “Do you have tomorrow?” “No – ” “Well, neither do I so all we both have is today – so that makes us the same age.” Her relieved smile was priceless.
We all are only given the present. The ratio between acceptance of day-tight compartments and actively living it out determines our level of satisfaction.
One caveat: living one day at a time does not preclude planning. Part of today’s work is preparing for the future. I am reminded of the pastoral painting of the couple who are working in their field. Underneath are the Latin words for “act” and “hope.” The act of sowing is done in the hope of reaping.
Think carefully about: 1) How am I jeopardizing today by living too much in the future? 2) What am I sowing today which will provide future crops? 3) Who needs to hear about day-tight compartments?
Words of Wisdom: “The ratio between acceptance of day-tight compartments and actively living it out determines our level of satisfaction.”
Wisdom from the Word: “This is the day the Lord has brought about. We will be happy and rejoice in it.” (Psalm 118:24 NET Bible)