Friday, December 12, 2008

468 Months and 39 Things I've Learned

Remember the movie City Slickers where the character Mitch, played by Billy Crystal, gets a call from his mom every year, on his birthday, at the EXACT time he was born? Love that part of the movie! And I love the line that Billy Crystal says that his mom still referred to his age in months, as if he were still a toddler. The speech that Mitch gave in that movie about his life and life in general really made an impression on me when I first saw it. I guess that's part of what inspired this particular blog post, well that and a very long commute to work where I have lots and lots of time to think.

So here are 39 things I've learned over my time here. They are in sort of a chronological order from "now" to "back then". Well, sorta. Just read it alright! :)

39. God is real. This isn't a faith issue. It’s a knowable fact.
38. If I'm successful with anything of any kind, it must be for a reason because my purpose here is to give to other people.
37. I don't deserve my wife but I'm so glad she puts up with me.
36. Your spouse is capable of forgiving you for pretty much anything.
35. Cats are God's way of saying that not everything that is fun in life is given to you easily.
34. Dogs are God's Devotion to mankind in the form of a four-legged critter.
33. God doesn't want my money, my tie, my house, my haircut, my job or anything else we think will make Him "like us more". BUT He does want to get to know me.
32. Some people you think are your friends only say they are but don't mean it like you do. Opening up to them can really hurt you. But don't stop trying. Sometimes the most treasured friends are found later in life.
31. Don't hold back on things you're thinking about. Get them out, in some way, NOW and get to talking about them.
30. Life is too short to skip saying what's in your heart to those that you care about.
29. Organized religion is, generally speaking, a poor attempt at reaching God but it can help you get started.
28. Having as much fun as possible doesn’t mean spending as much money as possible.
27. Be consistent with your kids.
26. Its hard to be a parent sometimes instead of a buddy all the time.
25. Your kids really don't want 'stuff'. They want to spend time with you. Don't shower them with things and end up starving them for your time.
24. Let your kids be "them" and don't try to make them be what you wish you'd been at their age.
23. Having stuff is still okay. Be able to skip having it to begin with and instead be content with what you do have. Grandma was right. "Count your blessings."
22. Generally speaking your job isn't about how good you are at it but how good you are with the people around you. Nobody wants to work with a jerk.
21. You ARE replaceable at your job.
20. Following the crowd can be a bad thing, even (and sometimes especially) among christians.
19. There are a lot of things that 'christians' have done in God's name that are very and horribly wrong. But I can't blame God for those things.
18. Communication really is the foundation of any good marriage.
17. Have as much fun as possible.
16. I don't deserve my son but I'm so proud of the young man he's becoming in spite my mess-ups as a dad sometimes.
15. Homeschooling rocks.
14. It takes a long time to learn to separate the meaning of the words "need" and "want".
13. Sometimes you can spend years waiting around for something you thought was perfect only to find out it wasn’t what you thought after all. So be honest with yourself.
12. Having stuff is okay. Be able to give it away though.
11. God's love for me does NOT depend on my position/status in life because that position/status changes.
10. Not having a dad was a very bad thing and there is much I could have learned from him if he'd stayed. I miss him though I never knew him. Every son should have a good father.
09. Taking a shower after gym class isn't as big of a deal as guys make it out to be.
08. Enjoy your education; have a good time with it.
07. The key to talking to girls is being confident and not afraid to be yourself.
06. Don't be afraid to make mistakes or say things, that the teacher will like, in front of other kids in class.
05. That girl that I thought liked me in high school … she really did ... but I was too chicken to talk to her.
04. All of the girls I liked in high school and kept quiets/shy about it, they were just as scared of everything as me, and I should've I'd asked them out.
03. There are some things I will never understand about God. He's too big. But I'll never stop trying.
02. All the questions we have about faith, science, space, aliens, ghosts, eventually point back to us needing God.
01. There are no monsters in the closet after all.

And after all this seriousness, I'll leave you with this thought for the day. The first part is something a friend of mine told me today in chat. I added the last sentence and thought it came together nicely :)

"Life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer you get to the end, the faster it seems to go. And the more you wish you had because you realize you left a lot of unfinished business."


Heather said...

Wonderful list, dear. I am very thankful for having a husband like you. Very grateful for 14 years and looking forward to 4-5 times that many more.

Jennifer said...

My personal favorites #35, 29, 20, 16 and 15, and 9. By the way, I beg to differ with 9. That Eau de Man Stank is nice, however.... showers are good too.

Rob said...

Glad you all liked it! As for the showers, I really wasn't meaning they were optional for the 'stank' but rather that in high school, guys make a big deal out of having to do that (the whole 'big reveal' thing). But yes, .. here here for the smell good!

Bacon said...

good stuff. nice to see someone post what matters to them the most. not alot of people have that courage.