The Tyranny of the Immediate

stopwatchEver heard of the tyranny of the urgent?  I think there is another tyranny just as destructive and that’s the tyranny of the immediate.

How many times have we heard, or said ourselves, “I’ve gotta have it now.”  We’ve got to fix the marriage now, we’ve got to lose the weight now, we’ve got to get out of debt now, now, now, now.  It’s immediate.  The truth is most of us didn’t get ourselves 20 or 30 pounds overweight overnight and it’s not going to come off overnight, but over time.

It’s by the tyranny of the immediate that marriages have been broken, businesses have been dissolved and partnerships have been ruptured.  It’s the tyranny of the immediate that keeps us from reading good books, listening to good music, or cultivating relationships with our children.

It’s the tyranny of the immediate that makes us poor in spirit, thin in soul, and shallow in thinking. It keeps us from setting aside time to think, to pray, to consider.  It even tells us we’re too busy to go to church on Sunday morning and worship our creator.

If you want to do yourself a big favor, get off the merry-go-round of the immediate. Stop ordering miracle diets, thigh-masters, and gut-busters.  Realize that anything worth having is going to take time.  Getting in shape and being healthy takes time.  Cultivating a skill set that allows you to excel at what you do and to make a better income takes time.  It takes commitment, a long-term mentality that says, “I am in this for as long as it takes.”

Trust me, God created you to live a big life. Here is what BIG stands for: beyond the immediate to the goal. Think of it.  Every single day, when you’re tempted to take a shortcut, to give into the tyranny of the immediate, remember your commitment to live BIG, beyond this immediate moment, beyond this decision, this urge, and this impulse to the goal.  What’s the goal?  Only you can determine that.

And if you haven’t determined it yet, that may be why you’re in the grips, and you live in the tyranny of the immediate.

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