Life Lessons from the Sea #16: Putting in that extra effort

Drake at the lake, raft steadied by brother-in-law-to-be, Devon
Our family has tried to fit in a few final trips to the lake in the waning days of summer. Our trips to the lake, while fun, aren’t without kinks. Dented tailgates, lost parts, deflated rafts, dead batteries and mysteriously malfunctioning engines. Needless to say, taking the family boating requires a significant amount of work and forethought. But it results in immense fun, deepened relationships and memories to last a lifetime.
So it is with anything worthwhile. Sometimes we may be tempted to coast through life, just trying to survive. I know I’ve felt like that a time or two, particularly when my children were young. But I learned that if I bear in mind a greater purpose than just making it through the day, life becomes more enjoyable. I may actually work more, but the payoff is so great that it’s worth it.
For example, when I was growing up, I took piano lessons. I know this was a sacrifice for my family. Not only did they spend their time and money on the venture, but they suffered through my early stages of learning to play. As I grew older and my skills improved, they became a source of joy for my parents. They’d ask me to put on mini concerts for the family or friends who happened to stop by. Although they enjoyed the music, I’m sure they derived as much or more satisfaction from seeing me progress and develop self-discipline.
How much easier would it have been to plop me in front of a TV when I was young or simply send me outside to play. But the extra work my parents put in resulted in a closer bond between us as well talents and self-discipline I wouldn’t have otherwise developed. Not to mention my gratitude.
I’m not suggesting that everyone learn to play a musical instrument (wouldn’t that be fun, though?). What I am suggesting is that as we approach life, we approach it with a purpose and goals in mind. As we do so, life becomes so much sweeter.
How do you approach life with purpose?

  • Can I answer that with, “I’m still working on that one!”? 🙂

  • I think it’s a life-long process!