Friday, December 7, 2007

Obligations

Obligations are usually surrounded by a negative connotation. But why? What are they and what makes them bad? Obligations are generally people or actions although one could argue that a person being an obligation is in reality the actions or duties related to them. The dictionary defines it as a duty, or gratitude owed. An obligation itself is a noun but I believe it always refers to an act.
Our very first and most important obligation should be to our maker. For that matter, every obligation that exists in our life should follow and be an image of our commitment to God. Life would be much easier if we all followed this simple rule. Christians (this includes me) are much quicker to make a commitment to God than they are to follow through on the responsibilities that go with it. This goes back to that negative feeling we get regarding obligations. It seems like we are referring to something that there's no choice about and the human side of us resists that. We don't like to be told what to do. We like to make our own choices. But why? Its much worse to come back later and admit defeat when we did not follow our commitment but instead chose our own path. Inevitably, it will always lead us down the wrong path. So again, why is it something we choose to resist although we are so willing to make the commitments in the beginning? This is true of our obligations to our spouse, children, work, friends, ect. I guess maybe we should try to get to the root of this problem.........commitments. Perhaps we are too quick to commit to something that we shouldn't be. Think about that the next time you "obligate" yourself for something. Is it something that you feel good about and believe in? Is is something you are willing to put in front of your own wants when its time to make a decision? And most important, are you going to follow through on your responsibilities? If the answer is no, you probably shouldn't be making the commitment in the first place. If the answer is yes, such as your obligation to God, a spouse, or even the PTA, then know that you are going to meet expectation and follow through on your duties. This shouldn't become something that you grimace at when mentioned. After all, if you've asked yourself the right questions before commiting, then what's the problem with the follow through? You did choose to obligate yourself for good reason.

Monday, December 3, 2007

How Time Flies

For those of you that are actually reading this on a regular basis (makes me feel almost famous!), I apologize for the delay. From being sick to work to life in general, there's many excuses I could give but I'm sure no one is interested in hearing about that. Anyway, I finally took a moment today to post an entry, which took my thoughts to just how quickly time flies; and not just when you're having fun. Parents always tell their children to appreciate each and every moment of life because it will quickly pass. Of course when we're young, that's just a "saying" and it has no real meaning to us. However, true to what they said, the older we get, the quicker things pass by us. Its sad to think about the wonderful moments in our lives that become little specks on our memory which sometimes loose their spark because we have forgotten the details. I'm not just referring to those moments that everyone recognizes such as weddings, births and other milestones we reach. I'm more focused on those brief but treasured instances in life in which you realize that this moment is special and may never be repeated. Quite often, I find myself in a trance, focusing as hard as I can to try and freeze a "picture" in my mind so that I won't loose it or ever forget that feeling. That feeling when I'm in the bedroom floor cleaning out a child's drawer to make way for bigger clothes and they are all around me, playing and laughing; until we end up in a big "tickle" pile on the floor. That same feeling when I've had a good day with my husband and there's a rare moment that all children are in bed and we are together in the same room, and for just a few minutes, we are talking, planning and dreaming. Together and happy. The feeling of uncontrollable laughter over something so silly that only that certain friend will understand and appreciate it. Or the day shared with my mom, shopping, cleaning, whatever but a good day together, solving the problems of everyone we know. No matter how down one can get in life, there are these certain moments that are so precious and treasured that no one can take from us. Too many times, I find myself just trying to keep up with this life that I realize I've missed a few of those moments and it brings me to tears. How could I have missed those irreplaceable minutes that I can never repeat? Its so frustrating yet day after day it happens. You have to relish in those few moments that you do notice and hope you get the opportunity to repeat those you may have missed. The sad thing is it will never be exactly the same because people change, things change, the world changes. Nothing can prevent that. So take some time today to notice a special moment and cherish it. Think about it, remember the details and know that you have just experienced something unique that time cannot take away.