The Things That Really Matter

The Things That Really Matter

Kara Guthrie at Georgia Southern University
Orientation Day ~ April 2, 2016

Yesterday I visted Georgia Southern University with my daughter, Kara. It was orientation day. She is soooooo excited about starting her collegiate career in the next few months. Her smile was beaming ALL day. Every site, every building, and every encounter with faculty and staff tended to energize her joy. For me the simple joy of experiencing her excitement was enough to keep a beaming smile on my face all day as well.

As we were enjoying the day together I was reflecting about life and the joy it can easily bring IF we focus on the things that really matter. Too often we focus on life’s burdens and issues. While these things should get some of our attention they really should be kept in perspective.

What does matter? Well, orientation days for your kids and things like it matter. I could provide a list of the many things that should really matter but, honestly, you probably already know them. So, instead of reminding you of the obvious I wanted to share a few thoughts about enjoying these things that really matter.

Look Backwards to Learn

the things that really matter
Kara Guthrie, Varsity Cheerleader – Archer High School
As Kara and I were talking yesterday I reminded her several times that her past has prepared her for this new and exciting time in her life. She had a great high school experience. I told her that now it is time to build on it.
When I look back over my life I see sooooo much. I have forgotten a lot (intentionally) and I have remembered a lot. I have enjoyed many successes and accomplishments. I have had my moments of praise and accolades. I also have made many mistakes, poor decisions, and taken actions that were unavoidable but painful. 
But the past is just that, the past. It matters in that it reminds us of past joys, successes, troubles, and pains. Each of these apsects of the past have something to teach us. We can learn from the victories and defeats. We can become better people IF WE DO NOT LIVE IN THE PAST but rather, learn from it. Too many people can’t let the past go. Something painful happened and they never let it out of their minds. OR they enjoyed success and accomplishment that has now diminished and they always think about that “better” time of their life. Tragically for too many people the past defines and dictates their present. 
The past can be a painful reminder OR it can be foundation to build on. There really is only one obvious choice, isn’t there?

Look At the Present to Enjoy

Time flies by. Literally. I woke up today realizing that in 4 days I will be 55 years old. What happened? It seems that it was only a few years ago that I was in high school myself. Now retirement lurks before me in just a few years.
Kara asking questions of a GSU
Faculty Member
I have some good years left if God allows me to live on. So NOW is what matters. I was watching Kara enjoy the day. She exemplifies the principle of “living in the moment.” She was not aware that she was teaching her daddy something he tends to forget. NOW MATTERS. Why, because time flies and everything changes. Enjoy NOW. Look at the blessings of NOW. What is good about your life? Who has God allowed to be such a wonderful part of your life? I know that these 4 years will fly by for Kara. It will seem like a flash and she will be walking across the stage to receive her Bachelor’s diploma from the university she chose. Wow!
Enjoy every present moment as much as possible. Why not? What have you got to lose by doing so? Nothing! But you will gain EVERYTHING that matters. 

Look Forward to Hope and Dream

I know that Kara Elise Guthrie has a bright future. She is so full of hope and she dreams of her future successes. As long as she maintains such a view of life nothing will stand in her way. Yesterday I thought to myself, “Yes, I am 55 years old. But I have the breath of life still in me. I have more to do and so much to share and give. Past failures, mistakes, victories and successes are things to build on.” My future is as bright as I want it to be. So is Kara’s. So is yours. 
Kara and I had a great day. It was filled with joy, hope, laughter, and expectancy. Is there any reason everyday can’t be like that  kind of yesterday? I think not. I think it is a matter of where we focus. 
Nuff said? 
Press on!
Tony Guthrie (PROUD daddy of Kara Elise Guthrie)

PS: I also have a wonderful son. Daniel Guthrie brings me joy as well. I love watching him become the great young man he is destined to become.

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0 Replies to “The Things That Really Matter”

  1. If we lived each day as if it was our last day then maybe we would be able to see the beauty of each day. I was blind at one time in my adult life. Now to see the beauty of nature is so precious to me. It draws me, reminds me of the beauty of God. It reminds me of my faithfulness of God. When I wake up each morning, I choose to worship God. In pain, I choose God. In happiness, I choose God. Every day, in the now, remember to thank God for the simple things in life. Laurie McCaulley

  2. This was an interesting article for me. I remember being that age, enrolling for college with my mother by my side. It was a long time ago, for me also, it seems like yesterday. It reminds me of how good God has been on this life journey. How he was there even when I didn't appreciate him being there.
    Looking back over time I can see the opportunities I missed I to serve him. He has been so good and gracious towards me. It is now my opportunity with the time I have left, to be a blessing and a worker in his kingdom, thankful for his many blessings. I now look forward, before it was with apprehensive about what life might hold, but now at this stage in my life it is with confidence. Confidence and faith based on past action of my God.

    So I encourage all to start today like Kara, full of anticipation and joy in the journey that is before her.

    Thanks Dr. Guthrie for sharing this experience with us.

  3. I remember when my two children went to college after high school. The excitement was overwhelming with joy of accomplishment on my part; and what the future held for them. I remember each milestone since then too. Today, God has blessed me with four beautiful grandchildren to share in their excitement.

    Our past, future and present play a significant role in our lives. But, What is really important today? Just a closer walk with thee! When I look back over my life, I spent time on things that had little and great value; at that time, though, they were big things (i.e.,another promotion, another chairmanship) for me. Today, at this moment in my life none of it matters. I'm grateful for God's blessings. Those things helped me to become the person I am today. What's really important, in priority, for me is first my relationship with God, my family and friends (spend as much time with them as you can, sacrifice if necessary); and continual learning and growing in the Word (never stop growing and serving). Today, I'm running to the one thing that what's really matters, The Prince of Peace.

    Run! 1 Corinthian 9:24 " Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it"

  4. This was an interesting article for me. I remember being that age, enrolling for college with my mother by my side. It was a long time ago, for me also, it seems like yesterday. It reminds me of how good God has been on this life journey. How he was there even when I didn't appreciate him being there.
    Looking back over time I can see the opportunities I missed I to serve him. He has been so good and gracious towards me. It is now my opportunity with the time I have left, to be a blessing and a worker in his kingdom, thankful for his many blessings. I now look forward, before it was with apprehensive about what life might hold, but now at this stage in my life it is with confidence. Confidence and faith based on past action of my God.

    So I encourage all to start today like Kara, full of anticipation and joy in the journey that is before her.

    Thanks Dr. Guthrie for sharing this experience with us.

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