I know all who were over the age of five probably have memories of 9/11and the days that followed. It was definitely a time when we were unsure of what would happen.
Daddy and I had a conversation on the Saturday after. He was emotional, even more than I was. He recounted his days in the Merchant Marines during WWII.
Normally he talked about sailing the seas on the ship and seeing the world but on this day he talked about seeing a ship hit by a torpedo in the English Channel, seeing the soldiers trying to swim to safety. Understandably he got all choked up. He also talked about the statistics of how many veterans of WWII were dying every day. I knew he was thinking about how long he had left…
Witnessing tragic events such as these shakes us from our complacency and reminds us of the brevity of life.
I always think about the lives of those who died that day in the weeks and hours that led up to that horrible event. Their days were quite possibly uneventful as summer was fading into autumn and school had started back. Many were probably talking about upcoming football season, their families, work, etcetera. They had no clue that their lives were about to be shattered by the unexpected. None of us had a clue how our lives would change that day.
I had lost a couple of young colleagues and friends to cancer in the years prior. When you’re in your thirties you don’t really think about how long you have but I had begun to be convicted that I needed to change my mindset.
You see one of those friends told me that she had been wanting to take a year off from teaching for a rest. Although she didn’t say it, I think she was possibly planning to start a family with her husband. Instead she was diagnosed with cancer. She told me, “When I was thinking about taking a year off, I wasn’t planning for it to be this way.” She passed away a few months later.
Instead of dreading the week days and crossing off them off the calendar, I began to thank God for being able to get up and go to work. That mindset was solidified even more so after 9/11. I tried to live each day in an attitude of gratitude.
But I Decided to retire as soon as I able. I Desired for my husband and I to retire early as my parents had done, traveling and enjoying themselves. I’ve seen many people work well into their sixties and then suffer a crisis in their health or the health of their spouse. I was Determined to make a plan to check off milestones instead of days so we could hopefully achieve those retirement goals.
I began working on a way to increase my income while I was working so I could retire early. It was hard work but I was able to do it. I was looking forward to achieving my goals. Some of my colleagues retired early to go into another job but I didn’t want to do that.
Time is a much more valuable resource to me. My husband says, ” You can make more money but you can’t make more time.” So true.
I wanted to have something flexible that allowed me to plan my own schedule each day and be spontaneous and thankfully I found it.
I retired early and so did my husband. We are enjoying our days traveling and spending time with our grandchild.
What we learned from those days of uncertainty is that we mustn’t take a day for granted and not settle for the status quo. We chose to work for the DREAM of our future lives.
God didn’t give me this life to waste it. Instead of working to accomplish someone else’s goals & dreams I want more.
I want to spend my days working to achieve the visions and dreams God has placed in my heart.
I want to fulfill the good works and purpose for which I was created.
I want to give more, live more, volunteer mire, serve more.
When you’re nearing the end of your days, do you think you’ll wish you’d spent more time at work?
Don’t give into fear of the “what ifs?”
Don’t live with regret.
Find a way make a living while you’re living your life.
Do the thing He has put in your heart.
“Lord, teach is to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Psalm 90:12