The only allotment of time we have all been given is today. Tomorrow is an elusive quest. Therefore, worrying about the future is an act of futility and a waste of valuable emotional and spiritual energy. The Latin adage, Carpe diem, is actually the beginning of a longer phrase that literally means, “pluck the day [as it is ripe; enjoy the moment and do not put your trust in tomorrow]. The inference of this is that we cannot just leave our future to chance; we have to seize every opportunity we have been given.
The word today was originally two words. The word, to, means in the direction of, for the purpose of, toward or upward. The word, day, means a span of time—or, in a more colloquially, it means a lifetime. I will take the liberty to say that the word, today, means to move in the purpose and direction of your lifetime. When we are courageous enough to do that, opportunities are created.
Truett Cathy, the founder of Chick-Fil-A, said the lesson of his life was taking advantage of unexpected opportunities. In 2006, his sales exceeded $2 billion with 1300 stores in 37 states. In 1975, Advertising Executive Gary Dahl was sitting in a bar with friends listening to them complain about their pets. In response to their dissatisfaction, he got the idea to create the perfect pet: the pet rock. Although his business only lasted six months, he became a millionaire and grossed over $1.4 million.
Last week on my morning walk I recognized an opportunity to marvel at the beauty around me. As I walked by an open weed-laden field that was full of electricity towers, I saw the most beautiful dew-dappled flower sitting right in the middle of the weeds that reminded me all conditions do not have to be perfect in order for me to excel.
Several years ago I heard a pastor say, “Your tomorrows are going to be wonderful, but the problem with most people is that they are so used to bad that they cannot expect anything good.” I want to remind some of you, and encourage others, that you have the power to change your life and make it everything that you want it to be.