What is important to each of us? What do we want to do with our lives and for what do we want to be remembered when we leave this world? I want to live as long and as healthy as possible, but I know that years are limited unless new breakthroughs are forthcoming. Whether we are a younger or older American (or some other nationality), we need to decide what we want to do with our time. There is a talk at our Church about choosing to do Good, Better, or Best. I recently found a quote by St. Jerome about this subject. It is:
The point of the talk that I mentioned before is that we need to choose how we spend our time. There can be many good things we can do, but we can choose better things to do with our time. If we know what we want to accomplish, then we can choose what is the best.
As we grow, our best grows also. I teach computer science. On the first day of class, if a student can write, compile, and execute the “Hello World!” program, that is great an the best they can do the first day of class. After two weeks, much more is expected of each student and “Hello World!” would not be considered that student’s best effort. As we improve in any area, what is expected from each of us will increase also. We all need to grow and improve. I know there are certain areas where there may be a peak, but in most areas we can continuously improve ourselves.
We are more capable of greatness than any of us realize. What can we do to achieve this greatness? One interesting discussion that has gone on for several years is whether we should base what we do on improving our weakness or growing our strengths. One of the more recent thoughts is “Do your best and forget the rest.” Don Clifton was one of the first authors to change the discussion from working to improve one’s weaknesses to building on a person’s strengths. Being a positive influence on our own life and the lives of those around us helps us to be our best. I believe if each of us understands our strengths and builds on those strengths, we will learn to be and do our best.