Carpe Diem!

by Sharnessa Shelton

One morning not too long ago, I was praying for the day ahead of me. I started by asking God to help me be as productive as possible, as that's something that I so want to try to do with each moment I've been given! And basically throughout that day and the next, a few more words, along with productivity, came to mind that I knew I wanted to live each day with as well. (And they all began with the letter "p"! Funny, eh?!) In order they were productivity, passion, purity, patience and peace. I'm only mentioning the other "4 P's" today, but I felt that they deserved more attention than I could give them in one devotional, so join me over the up-and-coming weeks as I'm going to cover the others in more detail!!

To start off, just to give you a better feel for the word, two synonyms (different words with similar meanings) for productivity are "efficiency" and "effectiveness"! Now, this is something that I really want to take on and get a hold of properly, because I just SO want each of my days to be as wisely spent as they possibly can be! I'm quickly learning just how much truth there is to a saying that I love, "Time, like a snowflake, melts away while we're trying to decide what to do with it." How true is that?! Life and time are such HUGE gifts, and I think it's so easy for us to forget that at times, isn't it!?! I know that I take them for granted far too often. It's so easy for me to forget about the fact that I won't be living forever, not that it's a great thing to be paranoid and go around thinking, "Oh my gosh! I may die tomorrow!" But we actually don't know when our "time" will come, and I think that a bit of a reality check is quite good, as we do need to be reminded of the swiftness of our lives. It's put brilliantly in Psalm 103:15&16, "Our days on earth are like grass, like wildflowers, we bloom and die. The wind blows, and we are gone - as though we had never been here." We've got to remember that each day, each breath is a gift from God.

So with all that in mind, you may be wondering what I mean by living each day with productivity? Have you ever heard of the Latin saying, "Carpe diem"? As some of you probably know, it means "seize the day," which could also be translated as "grab," "clutch" or "grasp" the day!! I take that as grab hold of the time that He's given you!! Make use of it!! Make each day count!

Practically speaking, what I mean by that is, grab hold of Jesus - grow each day in your relationship with Him; grab hold of those around you - love them with all you've got; grab hold of learning - in life situations, at school, from your parents, etc; grab hold of opportunities to get out there and make a difference and make history - whether that be at home, in your family, in your school, in your church, in your friendships, in your community, etc. Get creative, guys!!! I'm sure that you could come up with many more ways you can "Carpe Diem," so I challenge you to try!! In fact, I'd love to hear your ideas, and perhaps how God's challenging you to be more productive with your time!

And a little side-note here: Productivity isn't only about the finished product; it's about the process as well. We mustn't be so goal-oriented that we miss "smelling the roses," as the old saying goes! And as one of my favourite scriptures highlights, "So I run straight for the goal with purpose in every step..." (1 Corinthians 9:26a, NLT. Emphasis added by me!)

So I hope that you, along with me, want to try to get the most out of every day! Make it count, make a difference!! Carpe diem, guys!!!