Life is Too Short: Rules to Live By

I was in a car accident on Tuesday. Not a small, fender bender. But a pretty HORRIBLE, life-altering car accident. The kind where you look back and ask, “how did we make it out alive.” It was scary, yet, not one bone was broken. I can’t even say a literal ounce of blood was shed. Needless to say, it was only by the grace of God that we, all six of us, made it out. 

But God!
But God!

Though I didn’t see the pearly gates or a bright light (smile), the accident to was enough to make every moment of every day that much more meaningful. It’s not that I take life for granted, but life-altering experiences such as this accident is enough to make one dig deeper into and find awe in even the smallest things. Things that I honestly can’t even explain at this moment. Things such as: how did I walk away? Why AM I here? Who is this God that I can’t see, but is so close that he can wrap his arms around me and keep me away from danger? I can’t put it into words. All I can say is BUT GOD, MY GOD, I LOVE YOU GOD, and THANK YOU GOD. And when I can’t put it into words, He feels my emotions and knows exactly the thanks, appreciation, and awe I have stored up in every pore of my being.

God, why did you save me? Why do you care that much about me? Why am I that important to you. He is a big God. I am but a mere human, and he cared enough simply to save me. Can you tell just how thankful I am?

With that in mind, here are rules to live by:

  1. Acknowledge God and live by the Word of God. I don’t care what you think. When there is a God as big as God who is able to be every where and any where at all times, yet still decides to take care of your every needs, some of your wants, and has the best interest of your entire wellbeing in not only thoughts, but care and actions, He is someone who should be acknowledged. It’s cliche, but He doesn’t have to keep you safe every day or make sure there’s food on your table or even create opportunities for smiles with your little ones, but He does. He cares just that much. In the midst of war, He cares enough to make sure what we consider little things are still tended to.  
  2. Sweat the small stuff. But not the small stuff such as deadlines and so on. But the fact that your child has an orchestra recital. Or that your daughter just lost her 5th tooth. Or that your son wants to lay in the bed with you again. 
  3. Remember you’re on this earth for a reason. And it’s most likely not what you call work. So spend less time obsessing about your career and more time fulfilling your purpose. They may work hand-in-hand, but perspective is key.
  4. Be thankful. No, be GENUINELY thankful for the people around you and all the blessings in your life. 
  5. Say no. Seriously. If you don’t want to do it and it takes away from something that you really do want to do or people who matter in your life (including yourself), then say no. You don’t always have to be the volunteer or the leader or the dependable person. There are people at home who are also depending on you. And even if not, you deserve some time to simply enjoy yourself…or even maybe to date or get dolled up or learn a new recipe or workout. Stop taking care of everyone else so that you can make sure you’re also taking care of you.
  6. Lighten up. If you’re a person who tends to be hard on yourself, stop! Give yourself a break. And if you obsess over success (points to self), stop! Take time to smell the roses. Work will always be there. The things and people that matter most won’t. You’re worth it.
  7. Let the past be the past. There are some things from our past that make our bellies cringe . But like people say, you can’t drive always looking in the rearview mirror. The past is the past. Stop crying over spilled milk. In the Bible, Paul talked about looking forward and pressing toward the mark. I feel Him on that. I may not always be consciously pressing toward something that we’d consider a biblical mark (though everything is spiritual), I don’t have time to obsess about that past. Yes. I spent 3 years in a horrible relationship. And even though not all of it was bad, looking back in a way that holds me down is pointless. I had to let go of that relationship in order to move on. And there are many other things I have to move from. It’s not all easy, but you have to make a decision and move on. For you.
  8. Be nice. I feel good because I know overall I’m a nice person. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a pushover and can be thought of as a b—–, but all in all, I like to make people feel happy to be around me. It’s the small things that count…such as holding doors, saying thank you, telling someone to not worry about a mistake they made (especially when it was out of their hands) and so on. It’s about joking and picking up the tab for others…or buying a specific type of product simply because you know that person enjoys it. And the “nice” list could go on.
  9. Stop obsessing. As I was reading through this post, I realized the number of times I used the word “obsess.” But it’s fitting. We obsess over our jobs. Over the clothes we wear. Over our children’s friends. And so on. The Bible tells us that worrying doesn’t add one moment to our lives. Yet. We do it all the time. While planning is good, obsessing and worrying is just dumb. Really! It changes nothing. Either take an action or resolve to stop thinking about it. Some things are just out of our control. And we have to be okay with that. Simply say, God I’m going to trust you, and move on.
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