Friday, August 29, 2008

The Big Picture

When I did Project WILD in college (a 2-week minimalist backpacking trip in the Blue Ridge Mountains), someone gave me this advice: "Look up! When hiking, don't focus on your next step to the point where you forget to look up and see the beautiful nature all around you." It's a life reminder that I've needed lately.

You see, I'm not a detail-oriented person. I have to work at overcome this shortcoming. I make lists. I double and triple check my SQL and SAS code to make sure I didn't exchange a greater-than sign for a less-than sign. I try to be disciplined in re-reading emails before sending them to catch grammar/spelling errors. Did I say lists? Lots of lists... It seems like life runs by the details. If the details are left undone, the big picture plan can't be accomplished.

I understand details are important, but oh how I love the big picture! It's what motivates me, drives me and most importantly inspires me in life. I relish how all the pieces fit together in the overall scheme of things. If I don't keep a balance of details vs. the big picture in my life, things don't run smoothly.

This week I realized I need to remember the big picture of my life right now. There have been a lot of details to care for in preparing for the baby. I've become so caught up in how to best organize all the baby stuff we've so gratefully received, how to launder cloth diapers, how to best manage my ever-decreasing energy to maximize my productivity, etc. that I've forgotten to marvel at the beautiful big picture that we're having a baby! That our lives will be forever changed and, while painful at times, this change will be deeply satisfying. That the we will learn about ourselves and our Creator through the joys and sacrifices of parenthood.

If I don't get a chance to re-read the key sections of the baby books or if I don't have the baby's room organized - it won't matter! Our baby will still be an amazing gift from God. He will still come home to parents who love and care for him. The miraculous mystery of life will still have taken place.

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