Don’t Miss the Boat (Noah’s Ark Wisdom Part 1)

Don’t Miss the Boat (Noah’s Ark Wisdom Part 1)

For the past three years, I’ve attended my local MOPS group meetings which are held at Trinity Lutheran Church. As part of the steering team, I spent many hours setting up and/or cleaning up for these meetings. In our main meeting room, there has hung this sign “Everything You Ever Need To Know, Can Be Learned From Noah’s Ark…” and each time I was in the room, I’ve read that sign… and then went on about whatever task was next on my to-do list. It wasn’t until this past meeting that I gave any real thought to the 11 items listed…

1. Don’t miss the boat.

Now, this might seem like extreme common sense to some of you, but don’t overlook this little pearl. I am a planner. I planned my high school days out. I planned college out (although in that case, the boat sank). I plan our budget. I plan our weekends. I plan to plan even.

Admittedly sometimes, more often than I’d like, my plans never work out in reality quite like they did when I was writing them out or dreaming them up. And, usually, I can roll with the waves fairly easily when it looks like things aren’t going to work out according to my plans. But I haven’t always been this way. It’s taken time and practice and lots of patience from those in my life who get to be the beneficiaries of all my plans.

Even with all my progress, I know I have missed quite a few boats and still struggle almost daily. I held myself back with one excuse after another… “it doesn’t fit into my plans right now”, “not now… maybe later”, and “it can wait” have often been my mantra.

When I think about boats I have missed, most of them are large cruiseships… big decisions where I opted to walk away or where I was faced with two choices and I simply picked wrong. Looking back, I can clearly see where I missed the boat (and thankfully, where I managed to catch a few just in time). It’s easy to look back and see the big boats that we’ve missed. Often, after the boat has gone on by, we are left with its wake of regret.

But today I was thinking about the smaller boats that have come and gone… the ones that I have missed because I figured they’d come again. Times when I could have told my husband that I was sorry for being stubborn or that I loved him rather than letting it be implied… times when I could have stopped putting away the dishes to play superheroes with my son (I usually get to be MaryJane)… a simple game of hide-n-seek goes further in forming a bond with my child than clean laundry does…going for a walk after dinner with my family rather than heading to my computer to check my email or update my Facebook status.

Small boats come by daily, and it’s true, sometimes the same boat comes by often (at least once an hour the hide-n-seek boat stops at our house), but I need to be aware that those little boats won’t come by forever. Eventually, their occurances will become fewer and fewer until eventually they stop coming at all. And while I will be the first to admit that often the reason I miss these smaller boats is because I find them to be inconvenient, I know that if I don’t make the time to catch as many of those boats as I can… well, it will be me that truly misses out in the end.

So, this next week, be mindful of the big and little boats that cross your path each day. Catch as many as you can and enjoy the trip.

Oh – and one last thought… stop beating yourself up over the missed boats of your past. One of the reasons you might be missing boats now is that you cannot see them because you are so focused on the ones that you’ve missed.


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