It's About Time
Take the time to tend to trees bearing fruit
Time management is one of my specialties, and I'm always reminding people to spend time on what's really important.
I try to practice what I preach, although I find that there are only so many hours in the day and too often the less important things consume my time.
How about you? Are you, on a consistent, daily basis, spending your time on what's really important to you?
I'm doing much better, thanks to some words of wisdom I gleaned from a recent sermon by Wayne Cordeiro, senior pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship in Honolulu. I feel his way of looking at life can have practical applications for anyone.
Pastor Wayne likened our lives to an orchard of 100 trees, five of which are fruit-bearing and the other 95 being ornamental.
The task is to identify the fruit-bearing trees, for those are the ones that must be cared for. In turn they will feed, nourish and really satisfy you.
He shared his five -- which he called "non-negotiables" -- and he is careful to tend to each daily.
He urged each listener to identify the fruit-bearing trees in their orchards. I have six, four of which are clones of Pastor Wayne's:
1) A close and growing relationship with God
2) A close relationship with family members
3) Staying physically and mentally fit and creative
4) Enjoying family and friends
5) Making a positive difference to others through my work
6) Continual simplifying of my home -- a real challenge for a pack rat like me!
Pastor Wayne then urged that progress be made by doing one thing regarding each of the non-negotiables every day.
My first reaction was that it would be impossible to do one thing daily on EACH, thinking that each of my fruit-bearing trees would require an hour of attention, but I've been relieved to learn that isn't the case at all.
I've learned that each fruit-bearing tree on any given day requires differing amounts of time and that some can be tended to in just a few minutes or in a pocket of time. I've nurtured relationships with friends with a quick phone call or note, and used pockets of time to exercise or de-clutter an area.
The daily consistency is what makes the difference and leads to progress. Not being a disciplined person by nature, this approach has made a welcome, gratifying, visible difference in my life.
I encourage you to identify the fruit-bearing trees in your orchard and see what happens when you faithfully tend to them on a daily basis. In due time you'll be rewarded with a harvest of good fruit and rich relationships.
See you in two weeks!
Ruth Wong owns Organization Plus. Contact her care of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, Honolulu 96813, call 488-0288 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org