Your First Time

Look at everything as though you were seeing it for the first or last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory.
~Betty Smith

 
Just this afternoon, I watched this quote in action. It happened so simply, but when it did, I thought of you… and I had to share.

Shortly after my wife and I got engaged, she convinced me we needed a cat. Despite my better judgement, I caved and we welcomed Inca into our home – a beautiful dark brown Burmese cat (who is still furious that we had the audacity to have children without consulting her first).

In order to make sure Inca is well hydrated in these summer months (and that her water is fresh enough for her liking), her water bowl has a small jug of water on top of it — much like the water cooler at an office except cat-sized. When the water level gets too low, water glub-glub-glubs from the jug to the bowl so that Inca can drink.The first time the water jug glub-glub-glubbed, she went crazy! She ran from the farthest corner of the house to see what was happening to her water. She pressed her face against the jug to get a closer look, she stuck her paws in the water to try to touch the glubbing, she would sit for hours waiting for the glub to happen again. It was hilarious! She was filled with joy and wonderment every time the water refreshed itself.

That was several years ago. Now, Inca doesn’t care much about the glubbing. It’s old news. She barely twitches a whisker when the water comes down. It’s sad that something that was once so exciting has now just become routine.

However. Just this afternoon, I watched as my children (ages 3 and almost 2) heard the water glubbing for the first time… and they went CRAZY. My little girl started squealing and my son pressed his face against the jug to get a closer look. They were entertained for the next 20 minutes (no small feat) just waiting for the glubbing to happen again.

As much as I enjoyed their reaction, sadly I knew, it was only a matter of time until the water would be old news.

This isn’t true just for cats and kids – it’s true for all of us. Remember the joy some of your “firsts” brought you?  Your first ride in your new car. The first week in a new city. Your first airplane ride. Even a first date with your spouse. Remember the joy, the flutter in your stomach.  Have those things become routine for you? Do you experience the joy the way you once did?

Think about the first time you stepped on the scale and the number was lower than the day before. Think about the first compliment you received. Think about the first time you had to buy a size smaller. Think about the first time your spouse commented on the progress you made. Remember the joy you felt? Do you still allow yourself to feel that joy?

This quote reminds us to be as joyful the 100th time as we were the first. Or, if that doesn’t do it for you … what if it was your last time?

Particularly if you are engaging in the Orenda business – when you share your story with others, be sure that it hasn’t become less joyful than it was the first time you told it. Take a moment, spend some time with the person you were when you “FIRST” experienced that joy. Proceed from there with that joy in your heart and voice.

Our life is full of routine, it is our responsibility to recall the wonderment we felt the first time in order to live lives of glory.

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