Modern culture allows us to live in a way that keeps us not only physically busy but mentally and emotionally busy as well. I can remember growing up playing three different sports because each sport had its own season. There was a beginning to the season and an end. Today there is often a beginning, but rarely is there an end to any sport or activity.
When I was a child life offered us fewer choices. I had one video game: Pong. That was the extent of my video game choice. I couldn’t play my video game with friends from another country or even from around the corner. To me, the world was big and slow. As parents you and I were, in some ways, forced to live life end to end. Take a look at what could have been a typical parent schedule 30 years ago.
Life happened end to end, because it was the only way it could be done. You couldn’t start a work-related phone call at home and walk out to your car to continue the conversation. Unless, of course, you went to Radio Shack and bought one of those fifty-foot phone cords, but that would only get you to the car, not down the street!
Once you got to the office, you could make a call or answer mail. No, not email, just mail. You remember mail, don’t you? Those paper envelopes delivered to a little box outside your house or to your office?
Living life end to end had its advantages. There were natural boundaries built into life, which meant we didn’t need to think about them too much. Today’s modern family has a vast array of choices. We are compelled to set healthy boundaries or suffer the consequences of busyness, hurry and out-of-pace living.
When our culture made a drastic change in the way families spend their time; when we gained the capability of living life on multiple layers at the same time, we didn’t live life end to end anymore. We can and, in many ways, must live life and to and.
There are benefits to both ways of living. However, there is more potential for an unhealthy pace of life with the latter. Take a look at a typical parent schedule from 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m in today’s modern world. It could look something like this.
See how much we can do in such a short amount of time when we live life and to and? Our ability has outpaced our capacity, and that leads to a question for each of us to consider: Has our capacity for doing more increased?
As I process that question, I am inclined to say no, it hasn’t. Our capacity hasn’t changed, but our ability to reach it has. If you have a 16-ounce glass and want to pour 18 ounces into it, you most certainly can. However, as we all know, a 16-ounce glass holds 16 ounces, and no more. So, if you choose to pour 18 ounces into a 16-ounce glass, you will have a 2-ounce mess.
Two Questions For Each of Us To Ponder
Are you pouring 18oz of lifestyle into a 16oz glass? If so, what two ounces are you making a mess with?
If I were to answer that question honestly I would tell you the “mess” went to my family. They got the left overs, they got what was spilled and it shouldn’t be that way. The solution, in my opinion is to do the best we can to live life end to end not and to and. What do you think?