They had worked together for several years. The older gentleman was a father-figure to the new-hire. Over long hours in the oilfield and many cups of coffee, he would share a lot of stories and wisdom gleaned from time served in WWII, from his thirty-plus years of marriage and over 20 years in the oilfield. Job changes put distance between the two but when travels brought the young man back through town, Lefty always had a pot of coffee ready and they would talk like no time had passed.
A number of years got by without a visit when a letter was received that simply said, “Always have a pot of coffee on for you. Stop in and see us when you can.” The young man thought it odd to receive a letter between Christmases but planned to stop in for a visit over the following Christmas. What the letter did not share was a cancer diagnosis that proved to be terminal in short order. An opportunity to see his friend was missed.
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. … Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. – Colossians 4:2, 5-6. Paul’s admonition to “devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful” provides valuable instruction on how to stay under the influence of the Holy Spirit. As with many of Paul’s letters, he was writing while in prison yet he did not waste an opportunity when he could proclaim the mystery of Christ through speaking or writing. I am convicted that through busy-ness or other distractions, I waste many opportunities to truly be the husband my wife needs, the father my kids need and the man those in my circles need to see.
Tyrone Smith is a friend who speaks on having a N.O.W. mindset – a ‘No Opportunity Wasted’ mindset. Click HERE to see Tyrone. My encouragement to you is: If you have a date with your wife scheduled, do not get caught working late in the office; If your son wants to have a catch, stop what you are doing and have a catch; If your daughter wants to paint your toenails, enjoy the time with her as she practices her new-found skill; If you have not talked with your dad or mom in a while, go visit them; and If you have a buddy that wants to have a cup of coffee, make the time. Stay tuned in to what I call Holy Spirit nudges and embrace every opportunity to enjoy a blessing and be a blessing.
Prayer guide: Lord, thank You for Your word and the way You spoke through Paul. Too often I let busy-ness or other distractions dominate the now when I should be listening to the Holy Spirit. Forgive me. I know BUSY stands for Being Under Satan’s Yoke and his yoke impedes healthy relationships. Help me take on Your yoke Lord as it is easy and light (Matt.11:30) when I focus on You and the relationships You have blessed me with. Keep me alert to distractions so I never miss another opportunity to love a brother as You love me. Help me glorify You as a man, husband and father that lives in the NOW. Amen.
A faithful father lives in the now with a ‘No Opportunity Wasted’ mindset.