“Does it even matter!?”
I have said this many times in my life, probably even thought it today!
“Does it really matter if…I finish this homework assignment… if I return his phone call…if I talk to that person ever again? ” And lately, (honestly I am ashamed of this but it’s the truth), does it matter if I shower today or sleep 10 more minutes or if the kids eat their vegetables or if they say “Thank you,” or on a deeper level, if we host this adoption seminar, if I go to church, or if I blog…
Well, the truth of the matter is that most things do matter and somethings just don’t. The beauty of it is that what matters to you as you operate in your “IT” may not be the same for someone watching you as you go for “IT!” When we think about our “ITs” or our purpose that we are striving so hard to fulfill, achieve, and obtain, we can sometimes get down and throw our hands up and say, “does it even matter…why am I doing this?”
I have questioned myself on so many(ok almost all) of my “ITs”… Do my “ITs” even matter?! My answer typically is Yes! Not because of me and my own agenda though. Sometimes what you are doing may not matter to you but it matters for other people and can have a huge impact in what direction their “IT” goes.
For example, D and I host adoption seminars. We love informing people about adoption and sharing our adoption journey , but sometimes it is so hard to find the time to do it. So we start thinking, does it really matter? However, if D and I did not have adoption seminars, we may miss the opportunity to lead someone to adopt because they were depending on our perspective. Or when it comes to me blogging, sometimes I think, does it really matter if I blog, does anyone even care about what I have to say? In reality, I write from my heart and it may not appeal to everyone but there may be just one person out there struggling in life and needing an encouraging word on this particular day. If I didn’t blog what was on my heart at this particular time, I may have missed my opportunity to impart encouragement in only the way that I can….
Recently, I read this parable and it put a lot of things into perspective for me…and maybe it will for you too!
The Donkey in the Well- Author Unknown
One day a farmer’s donkey fell down into a well.
The animal cried for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn’t worth it to retrieve the donkey.
He invited all his neighbors to come over & help him. They all grabbed a shovel & began to shovel dirt into the well.
At first, the donkey didn’t realize what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone’s amazement he quieted down. A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up.
As the farmer’s neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!
Ok, ok, so of course the moral of the story is to not let life get you down, to shake off all the bad, to not give up, blah, blah blah…
The moral is wonderfully encouraging don’t get me wrong, but I kept thinking about different aspects of this parable: What about the farmers and neighbors? How did they feel after doing this to the donkey? How did they feel after seeing what they have witnessed? What if the donkey would not have shaken the dirt off? What if the donkey would have never fell into the well? Did they ever cover up the well?
Imagine how the farmer and neighbors felt after witnessing the donkey falling into “it” (the well) and making it out alive, although he had so much adversity literally thrown onto him- I mean, they were trying to kill him! They probably walked away feeling horrible for not helping the donkey more and giving up on the donkey, but also walking away not realizing that they helped the donkey out tremendously…they gave the donkey a clear purpose…to shake off the dirt so that he could live! The farmers also probably spoke of this one, seemingly unimportant old, unwanted donkey fighting for his life, the donkey’s “IT,” years after this event.
“The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out. Proverbs 20:5 New International Version (NIV)
You and I are like the donkey (in the nicest way possible, truly)… we are fighting for our “ITs”, we are resilient! We are shaking off all of the “you can’t do that… you are not smart enough… you don’t have the skills… you don’t have a degree…you don’t know what you are doing…you will never be that or go there or have this or that” adversities and using them to help us keep building up to achieving our “ITs.” Some of us are looked at as “old or unwanted or useless or invaluable” like the donkey but you keep pushing forward! Others around you want and need to see this! Resilience is such a powerful life giving skillset and can only be built by getting “dirt” thrown on us. Your “IT” is not all about you! If it matters or not, is not for you to decide! Allowing people to witness you doing “IT” is what it is all about, it’s truly a priceless gift.
So does “IT” matter? The journey to accomplishing your “IT” absolutely does matter- if it did not matter, then there would be no purpose for any of us.