How Often Do You Stop To Smell The Roses?


Have you ever looked at your child, grandchild, niece, nephew or younger cousin and said, “You’re getting so big?”  Or have you said, to someone who is like a little brother or sister to you, “Wow!  What happened?  When did you grow up on me?”  …Did you wonder, “Where did the time go?”  Or did you say to yourself, “They grew up right before my eyes, and I didn’t even see it happening!  How did I miss it?”  These questions will or have entered all of our minds at one point or another.  If we think about it; we all can agree with the saying, “Time flies with irresistible rapidity.”

The changes that we see in the seemingly fast transformations in life aren’t limited to our thoughts of others.  Have you ever thought about your current place in life, and certain questions hit you like a ton of bricks?  Questions, such as, “Where did the time go?  When did these wrinkles get here?  What happened to your thick hair?  When did your hairline start to recede?”  It doesn’t matter if we’re in our late twenties, mid thirties; or in our forties, fifties, sixties, seventies or eighties.  Seasons of reflection touch everyone of us at different stages in life.  ..STOP!  Before you click the “Ain’t nobody got time for this” button, let me be clear.  This is not a post about where we should be in our lives by now.  So, stay with me, and think about this question:  “How often have you stopped to smell the roses, along your walk?”

Life’s busyness

imageLife is filled with pursuits.   We go after dreams, success; or career, education, business and personal goals.  Sometimes we are so caught up in the daily grind, until we don’t stop to enjoy the journey.   We eye out promotions.  We pray and ask God for elevation.  When we get new positions, we press to maintain. All the while, we tend to forget about today; and when we emerge from the whirlwind of the hustle and bustle, we find that we have regrets.  Have you ever been there?  Have you ever woke up and wondered, “How did I get here?  I’m financially solvent.  My family is healing.  Yet I feel as though I’ve totally missed today.”

How do we miss today?

A lot of times we spend today planning for what we’re going to do tomorrow.  We spend time looking towards the future; things we want; places we want to go; and people we intend to rub noses with.  We set goals, and make time for pseudo priorities.  But we neglect to think about today.  My friends, we are in today.  Tomorrow is tomorrow; yesterday was yesterday.  What about today?  I know that we are living to live again;  we are living for eternity.  Yet, are we serving God and loving God today?   Are we appreciating what God is doing for us today?   Do we see the small things that God is doing for us each and every day?  Do we seek to please the Lord today?

I don’t mean that we should not make plans and not set goals.  Because we should prayerfully map out strategies and remain forward thinking.  But sometimes we are so engulfed in keeping our eyes on earthly destinies until we lose our identities in the pursuit.  We forget that we even like silk.   We forget how wonderful homemade potato salad is.  We fail to recognize how our loved ones have totally changed.  We miss the still small voice of the Spirit of The Lord trying to get our attention.  Oh yes, some of us don’t see how our sons and daughters are hurting underneath their masks of strength.  My friends, we need to pay attention and take notice that today matters.  A lot of times we’re so busy focusing on tomorrow until we totally miss today.  We miss the joys of what’s happening today.  My question to you is,  “Can you smell the roses in the midst of your today?”

What did we miss?

I remember when I was studying for my undergrad degree, while working full-time and raising three children as a single mother.   I was so busy trying to pass classes with top grades until I failed to realize how much I enjoyed learning.  Years later, when my children were much older, I started studying towards a masters in Religious Studies at a university before transferring to seminary.  I never enjoyed the discussions, or allowed friendships to develop.  My all around life’s responsibilities overshadowed any thoughts of stopping to smell the roses.  When I studied for the Masters of Divinity, I was so intimidated by the Hebrew and Greek classes; and inundated with work responsibilities, until I couldn’t relish in my joy of learning a new language.  But, now that I have the degrees; as I mentor someone else who is studying in Seminary, her excitement about the learning process has me thinking.  I missed today while I was studying.  I missed the fact that I loved learning.  It reminds me of one of my favorite scriptures.  Psalm 118:24 says, “This is the day which the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”  (KJV).  My friends, don’t miss out on rejoicing in any of your days.

How do you smell the roses in your today?

Roses have a strong aroma. Their fragrance precedes them.  You can smell their scent when you walk in any room.  Their smell draws you.  imageRoses’ scent and diverse beauty take your attention from what you are doing so that you can take notice.  I believe that is one of the reasons why it is said that the famous goft pro, Walter Hagen coined the phrase, “Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses.” 

Roses?  The appreciation of today…..How often do you stop to…..

  • Celebrate incremental accomplishments.
  • Thank God for giving you the fortitude not to quit
  • Enjoy the small things like listening to your children have joyous conversations. Or hear your sons schooling their nephew with positive tidbits that they missed from a father figure.
  • Notice the different sounds of birds chirping.
  • Hear an owl going, “Hoo Hoo!”
  • See how God is filling the void in your heart with joy rather than constant pain from your loss.
  • Hear the Spirit of The Lord comforting your heart and reassuring you of God’s love.
  • Enjoy talking with the ladies in the book club.
  • Tell your family how much you love them.
  • Thank God for waking up one day a week without an intense headache.

My friends, don’t come to a complete stop.  Just temporarily halt, and take time to smell the roses.  Thank you for joining me in these thriving Thursday thoughts on Friday morning.  My last question for you to think about:  “How often do you stop to smell the roses?”  Join me in conversation.  I’d love to hear from you.  We’ll talk soon.



Originally posted 2016-02-26 00:00:17.

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