Summary: Theme: God guides and provides for your mission one step at a time. (Principle 7 from Made to Count)
Theme: God guides and provides for your mission one step at a time. (Principle 7 from Made to Count)
Carpe Diem! A life of adventure. A life of significance, not merely success.
That’s what we all really want deep inside our hearts - even if the first part of our life has been a drive to succeed. We have too often obtained what we sought only to ask later, “Is that all there is?” The accumulation of stuff – awards, promotions, high-tech toys, frequent flyer miles and second homes – leaves a vacancy in our soul. The dreaded realization close in around our hearts like strangling fingers as we gasp and grasp the reality — stuff doesn’t satisfy!
It’s the lesson Robin Williams was teaching his students in the movie, Dead Poet’s Society. Playing the character of Professor Keating, he leads the boys across the campus of their prep school into any ivy-covered building where the memories of past generations line a heavy, glass trophy case. In a scene thick with musty tradition, he invites his students to gaze at the faces of athletic heroes posing with confidence and smiling back at them from photos now brown with age. He points to the awards and trophies that are lined up like proud sentinels but are merely gathering dust. The professor instructs a student to read a poem…
Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old time is still a’ flying,
And this same flower that smiles today,
Tomorrow will be dying.
Professor Keating’s teachable point? Seize the day – or, in Latin – carpe diem!
Directing the attention of his captivated students to the fading photos of these campus heroes from days gone by, the professor points out that they weren’t so different – full of hormones and feeling invincible, these boys from yesteryear were bursting with hope and life, yet now they were gone. “…did they wait until it was too late to make from their lives even one iota of what they were capable? Because you see, gentlemen, these boys are now fertilizing daffodils. But, if you listen real close, you can hear them whisper their legacy to you.” Placing his own ear tightly against the showcase, the professor challenges his charges: “Go on…lean in!”
As the boys lean in, mesmerized by the professor’s ability to stir their imaginations, he whispers hoarsely: ”Carpe…diem…Hear it? Carpe diem!! Seize the day, boys, make your life extraordinary!”
It’s one of those movie scenes that imbeds itself in your mind. A light suddenly comes on as you watch it, one that all of us need while groping in the darkness for life’s significance and meaning. We want to make a difference. We desire our life to be an adventure. We hunger for our lives to be extraordinary…and not just run of the mill, merely “ending up pushing up daffodils.”
But to Seize the Day you’ve got to start where you are. It’s not just about, “If only I were in another position,” or “If only I were in a different place.” Seizing the Day means starting, grabbing hold of God’s significance for you right where you are!
I. Philip Was a Man Who Was Faithful Right Where He Was