Spending Time

FG_AUTHORS: Alyssa Davis

Recently, taking some quiet time to reflect on my goals and priorities helped me decide to try and sell my old textbooks. I always liked having them around just in case I needed to look something up, and I remember looking at my parents' books on the bookcase while I was growing up, so I thought maybe one day my future children would do the same. However, that is a ridiculous reason to store shelves (and pounds) of books - if I haven't taken a second look at any of those books in the past year, what life circumstances do I imagine changing that will create a world where I suddenly want to brush up on critical thinking or sociology? I held on to books from when I studied Biblical Hebrew because I love languages, I used to know so much Hebrew, and maybe one day I'd try and pick it up again.
But here's the thing: I won't.
I know this because I cannot foresee any possibility that I'll need to - I know enough to use a concordance when I want to get deeper in Biblical texts, so I have no motivation to try and cram all that vocabulary and grammar back into my brain. And really, if I were to study a language, Biblical Hebrew falls on my list of priorities behind Spanish, Portuguese, and French. IF things come up that I never anticipated and I need those books down the road, I will replace them, but I think that is much less likely than the chance I'm taking on selling/donating them to make my present and future simpler.
So I am at peace with parting with yet more stuff. But the fruit of this reflective time is not yet done! Because remembering that I really do want to learn Spanish (Matt and I sponsor a girl from Nicaragua and would love to meet her one day, and I would love love love to be able to speak with her directly) made me a little bit sad that I never have time to study it. And then while I was reading on the internet I came across this quote in response to complaints of not having time: "Everyone gets 24 hours, and you decide how to spend them." And the more that sunk in, I realized that if I spent some of my time on the internet studying Spanish, I just might get somewhere with that.
This is true of everything I wish I had more time for - from keeping in touch with friends to getting more sleep to running to spending time with God. Some seasons are busier than others, and some have more flexibility than others, but ultimately it is up to me how I spend my 24 hours a day. And if I truly don't have time for the things that nag at the back of my mind, maybe it's time to check out my priorities and see what's out of order: the things I spend my time on, or the things I wish I did instead. Maybe like with those Hebrew textbooks, I'll find habits or self perceptions that I'm really ready to let go of.

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