The Hourglass


I have a collection of hourglasses.  They range in time from two minutes to one hour, but I still call them all hourglasses.  For some reason I have been fascinated by hourglasses all my life.  To me, they symbolize the true nature of time.  The hands on a clock go round and round.  When one day ends another begins.  Looking at a clock can give the impression that we have all the time in the world for life.


The truth is, life is more like a countdown timer than a clock.  While time goes on in cycles of days, weeks, months, and years, life for us as individuals is linear.  We each have a limited number of days.  There’s only so much sand in our hourglass and eventually it runs out.  Knowing this, we would do well to spend some of our precious time thinking about what it is that we want to accomplish with our life. 


One way of doing that would be to imagine that today, unexpectedly, our time were to run out.  Let the reality of that possibility sink in.  Then ask yourself, “What are the things I wish I had done?”  How would you finish the sentence, “Wait a minute! I was going to _____!”   Spend time answering those questions because those are the things you need to be doing.


I’ve heard it said that most people spend more time planning their vacation than they do planning their life.  I believe that all too often that’s true.  We don’t need to be depressed by the brevity of life.  We need to be motivated by it.  There is time to accomplish everything you need to, but there’s no time to waste. 


I’ve heard it said that we must all endure one of two pains:  the pain of discipline or the pain of regret.  Discipline weighs ounces and has a reward.  Regret weighs tons and has a penalty.  Planning and fashioning a well-designed life requires discipline.  Every day is a precious gift from God.  Don’t waste a single one.  Start today.