Seize the Day?
By: Lindsay Tedder
Carpe Diem - seize the day
The world is yours for the taking
Slay all day!
YOLO (you only live once)
These are cultural mantras that we are exposed to regularly. We live in a society inundated with self-empowerment. While I am just as motivated by a powerful quote as the next girl, this got me thinking. What do these mantras really mean and are they truly something we should be quoting and allowing to motivate us?
What would the world look like if we weren’t all “seizing” and “taking” and “slaying” but rather, loving and giving?
Carpe Diem - seize the day. What exactly are we seizing? Yes, I understand, we should be motivated to fulfill the call God has on our lives, but is that really what this means? It literally means to “pluck the day” or enjoy the day while you can. I fully embrace not wasting a day and embracing what God has given us new each morning. Carpe Diem is historically linked more to enjoying your life from a pleasure standpoint, not so much as a Biblical call. The term can be dated back as early as 23 BC, when Horace, a Roman poet used it in his work, Odes.
So, 23 years before our Lord and Savior entered this earth, humans everywhere were trying to seize their days? This is shocking to me.
What if instead of “seize the day” we shifted our focus to an attitude of “love the day?” If God is love and He gave us breath in our lungs one more day on this earth, should we not be just overwhelmingly grateful for His abundant mercy and love the crap out of each day?
Trust me… I do NOT wake up like a ball of sunshine ready to smother everyone around me with love, hugs, and kisses. I do not pop up and praise God for the glorious day before me. I wish I did, but to be honest, most days I wake up with a toddler head smashed against my cheek because someone refuses to sleep in his own bed. Most days I am not so happy until that “hot juice” hits my soul. (My face-smashing toddler refers to my daily java as “hot juice” and now I can never not refer to it that way).
If God is love and He lives in us, His love is made complete in us because He loved us so intensely that He sent His son to die for our sins.
When we show love, we show God.
When we show love to those around us, it is really our Father shining through. When I love people, I am showing them God. I didn’t correlate the two at first. However, when I show love to strangers, this may be the only glimpse of our Father they will ever see. I have made it my mission to just be loving and kind. Opening doors for strangers, letting people in front of me in traffic (even though I KNOW they saw the same merge sign that I saw 3 miles back and even though I want to show them that they need to pay better attention and even though they do not give me the “thank you” waive), saying hello, making eye contact, asking how my barista’s day is going and genuinely listening for her reply, are all things I do to try to show His love.
If I get too caught up in seizing and slaying and taking, I can very easily miss opportunities to show love, and showing love is showing God. I never want to get too caught up in my own self-driven mission to stop showing love and God to those around me.
Will you join me in this mission to show love and show God to those around you? Will you help me create a world where love is greater than seizing or slaying or taking?
Lindsay Tedder is a believer, wife, mom, bestie and writer who lives in Columbus, Ohio with her bearded, bourbon-loving husband and her too-cool-for-school toddler. She is full of raw honesty, enthusiastic authenticity, amiable compassion, humble grit, powerful passion…and outrageous laughter, double chins, real life, and frothy nectar-of-the-gods coffee…because…coffee. Raised by a hardworking single mom, she overcame such trauma as sexual abuse induced food addiction, the debilitating health issues associated with endometriosis, a decade of infertility, and recurring life themes of worthlessness. Connect with her at www.LindsayTedder.com.
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