Seize Simplicity

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          Someone told me about a hiring technique that is used by a huge, profitable corporation here in America. During an interview, a potential new employee is given the following scenario and then asked specific questions relating to that scenario. The potential new hire’s answers reveal a potential good or bad fit for the job. It goes something like this:

          Imagine that you are headed home from work knowing that you will enjoy a nice evening with your loved one. Once you settle in and enjoy a great dinner, a seemingly mundane question comes your way, “How did your day go?” Without any hesitation, you immediately answer… “This was my greatest day ever at work!  Everything went exactly how I wanted it to go. I almost didn’t want to leave.”

          Now that you have established the grandeur of this momentous day, I have some questions for you. If you could see yourself in any activity doing anything and it was the greatest of all days… where in your mind’s eye were you working? What were you doing exactly? How did your labor affect you and others? What would that day at work look like for you?

          In your mind, are you in your current job or another job? Are you at no job at all but still laboring to accomplish something? The way you specifically answer such questions reveals your “zone”, your “sweet spot”. The answers to these questions reveal your personal “wheelhouse”. Maybe you should be doing a lot more of that activity on or off the job? Maybe you have a passion for that activity because you are even called to do it, consistently. What is that one thing?

         If we discover that “one thing”, we also know what is not that “one thing”. If we know that “one thing”, we have a much greater chance of saying “no” to other things that keep us from our “one thing”. If we can come to terms with what matters most to us, we automatically realize what means much less to us. Prioritizing becomes real simple in the midst of passion.

         Living the “simple life” is partially a by-product of knowing what we want and need to do most in life. Sometimes in life, we need to make certain things a priority while letting other things go. It’s that kind of decisiveness that help us live effectively, efficiently, and with excellence.

         For me, as a minister, there are moments on a Sunday morning when I lock eyes with someone in our church and we both realize that in that moment, an un-orchestrated, un-expected transaction is taking place. Somehow, in such moments, there is the divine nudging of one’s heart or the tweaking of one’s mind or the stirring of one’s soul that leaves each of us affected in some way that is seemingly useless to try to explain. It just is. In those moments I could remain content to linger there for a while. These are moments where time is seemingly suspended ever so slightly and one is acutely aware that the nearness of the epicenter of the will of God is at hand.  

        In those moments, I never wish I had taken a day off to play golf. No, in those moments there is no desire for anything else. What is that for you? What is your zone? Is it looking into the eyes of your infant? Crossing a finish line? Hugging a lonely soul? Feeding the homeless? Telling a great story? Listening to the sound of scripture reverberate through your mind over a cup of coffee? Training a sales staff? Becoming one with a guitar? Counseling a wayward teen? Harvesting an organic garden or planning a trip of a lifetime? Whatever your dream activity is, discover it, develop it, and demonstrate it for the glory of God. Whatever your dream activity is, protect it from complexity, from over-commitment, or from useless and inane busyness. Protect those things that matter most from the cares of this world. Never crowd out your “one thing”. Seize simplicity in a cosmos of complexity.  You are worth it!

-Dr. Gary Hewins


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