There have been many words to describe this time, but perhaps the one I hear most often is “uncertain.” And I don’t disagree that there is a lot of uncertainty in our day to day lives and few of us have much control over decisions that affect us, but few things have ever been absolute.
“Death and taxes are the only absolutes in life,” my dad would say.
Numbers, in some cases are absolutes and there are a lot of numbers in my thoughts. For example, 6:00 is the time my alarm goes off every morning so I can drive sixteen miles to do my farm chores.
I’ve never been or wanted to be a morning person so this number is challenging for me! For some people, this is not early, so it’s a relative term, I guess.
Every morning, in addition to calling each one by name, I count my animals as I’m doing chores. In the heifer lot there are ten first-year mommas and sadly, only nine calves. In the cow lot there are seventeen and seventeen. My yearlings total seven.
If there is one missing, I recount again or I begin searching for the missing animal. After I feed the two horses and three dogs I drive back home. Another sixteen miles. About two hours is usually how long it takes for my morning routine.
This has been what I do every morning for the last seven months. In itself, that is about 6,720 miles. (Now you know why my husband thinks I need a new Jeep.)
Buddy, my faithful pup, gets two treats when we return for his hard work in protecting me. Thirty minutes to shower and prepare to go to my office jobs where I comb through about 200 emails a day, answer approximately ten phone calls or messages and try to manage the my other responsibilities and deadlines.
After I leave work, I drive the 16 miles to the farm, count and care for my animals before I drive the return trip of 16 miles to spend three to four hours with my family before I go to bed at 10:00.
Yes, I’ve put some thought into all the numbers in my daily routine, but there are more.
My youngest child will soon be thirteen years old and my oldest daughter will have her first child, my first grandchild in thirteen weeks. Next week, my wonderful husband and I will celebrate 25 years of marriage.
There are a lot of other numbers in my life, as well. Grades, dates, and times for my son’s final days of seventh grade. The number of acres at the farm is approximately 560 which is about the same number as our monthly mortgage. There are numbers in loan balances and checking accounts, in addition to dates for enrolling in programs or making payments. Other numbers like years, my weight (which I’m no longer willing to talk about) and how many gray hair I have since I haven’t been able to cover it up.
What do all of these numbers really mean? Are they absolute or relative? What on my list is really valuable? Not monetarily, but of value? I’ve had a lot of time to think about that during this “uncertain” time.
What do I do that has lasting value?
I’ve read countless articles on self-worth, core values and there is nothing more valuable to me than the relationships of family, friends, and prayer warriors. My relationship with God.
After this “uncertain” time, what will you return to? What do you value?
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