The time is NOW.
What will you do with your one, important, beautiful, temporal life?
I’ve been feeling a sense of urgency to live a more purposeful and meaningful life for quite some time, but more so over the past 12 months after my oldest sister’s untimely death. Andrea was only 58.
If you’ve ever lost a sibling or someone close to you, you know that it shifts you. Some shift to depression and isolation. Others shift toward healing, learning, and growth.
I’m the latter.
In addition, after attending a couple of funerals recently, I’m even more focused.
I also turn 50 this year. I do not mind aging. I am excited for the days ahead. I just have a keen sense that tomorrow is not promised, so I must get busy living a full life NOW!
I hope after reading this, you will too!
Here’s the deal: The more I live, the more I realize not everyone (older or younger) feels this sense of urgency. Sadly, most people are stuck and living a “blame-filled” life. They blame their parents, their job, their school, their teachers, their boss, their neighbors, their church, their synagogue, their DNA, their history, their skin color, their failures from the past, and even their culture for their current circumstances.
Blaming is a part of their identity. So, naturally, it must be their belief system. And that’s what holds them back and keeps them stuck.
To live a full life, you have to shift out of the blame game. Forgive. Move on. Take one step forward every single day.
Just two weeks ago, I attended the funeral of Sue Ann Batts and listened, Gary, Sue’s husband share that, “Sue always tackled one task at a time with razor like focus, even as challenging as that task was. She just stayed at it. She never anguished over what was to come.”
That could explain why Sue always had a smile on her face, yet she certainly dealt with her fair share of adversity growing up.
I also traveled to Cleveland to attend Principal Assistant Attorney General Marilyn Tobocman’s funeral (see photo above). Her obituary said she always called herself a “professional citizen,” way before going to law school at the age of 46. Did you read that? She didn’t attend law school until 46 because she wanted to be deeply active in her four daughters lives! As a professional citizen and as an attorney, Marilyn was a champion for the legal rights of women, people with disabilities, and victims of human trafficking.
When I met with Marilyn, after publishing my book, Inspiration in My Shoes, she said, “Don’t do things that are comfortable. Do things that are right. Keep going and never stop. Go all the way.” I am taking her words of advice very seriously!
Just last week, Dave Wainwrightpassed away after being diagnosed with an aggressive lung cancer diagnosis in late November, 2016. I remember meeting Janis, his wife, back in 2008, while at a CedarCreek Church. We relentlessly prayed, talked, and cried together for Dave to come out of his deep struggles and live a more purposeful, God-honoring, and meaningful life. And, OH MAN, did he. He became a ministry leader, helping others who struggled with addiction, and he changed COUNTLESS lives.
Dave rose above his circumstances, stopped blaming others, felt a sense of urgency, and lived out his one, important, beautiful life with purpose and meaning.
I am writing this blog on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Talk about someone who felt a sense of urgency. He once said, “Like anybody, I would like to have a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will.”
I believe that doing God’s will means ridding yourself of shame, guilt, blame, worry, and doubt. It means trusting God with your life. It means having stone-cold faith, believing in what’s possible, taking risks, living out loud in your truth, and operating according to a deeply grounded understanding of your WHY every single day.
So, I ask, what will you do with your one, important, beautiful, temporal life?
The time is now.
Diana Patton is a Speaker, Social Justice and Integrative Health Advocacy Coach, Author and Attorney. Learn more about her by visiting her website. Click here to read a free chapter of her book, Inspiration in My Shoes, or read more articles, here. Interested in having Diana speak to your organization? Listen to this 15 minute video and contact her.
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