A few weeks ago Cheryl and I were finishing up a bicycle ride. We were side-by-side at a light, waiting for the light to change. We were first in line with several cars behind us and a single car in the oncoming turn lane in front of us. The turn light went to green and the cars in the turn lanes began moving.

Without warning a car barreled through the red light from our right, colliding with the car exiting the oncoming turn lane. Good Samaritans descended on the car, as the elderly woman driver sat stunned with deployed airbags hanging around her. The group helped her to the curb, shaken and stirred and with a very obvious broken arm.

Riding home afterward, I was suddenly aware of a stark reality: Had the elderly woman arrived at the intersection some 90 seconds later (she was the only car in the oncoming turn lane) it would have been our light that turned green and we would have been in the intersection instead of her.

Gulp.

we would have been in the intersection when the offending car ran the red light.

Along with a renewed conviction to look twice at intersections, events like this force deep reflection. One thought is that I am increasingly struck by how fast time seems to be flying by. Work days fade quickly into work months. We have now slipped into the final quarter of 2016. Where did the year go? Events like this remind me of the profoundness of one of my all-time favorite quotes: “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives” (Annie Dillard).

“And Your Point Is…?”

Redeem the day. It’s easy to live in the grind of life and do a lot of grinding but not much living.

So What?

Two points of application come to mind:

  1. From a leadership perspective, make the most of every opportunity. Don’t hold back on helping someone improve. Get the most you can out of every conversation. Make an impact, because you really don’t know when you’ll get another opportunity.
  2. I get that life has its unavoidable grinds, but I want to live first. I want to make the most of life because it is too short to let it fly by without investing in the people, noble causes and celebrations that make a difference.

The Big Picture

We can’t presume upon tomorrow, so we best make the most of today.

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives” (Annie Dillard)

 

QUESTION: What’s one thing you can do to redeem your day today?

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