Be present – give time, attention

Published 4:55 pm Saturday, September 2, 2023

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By Dunford Cole

Pastor of Campground and Rutledge Methodist Churches

How hard can it be to give someone five minutes of your attention? 

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I was just watching this incredible documentary on bands from the late 80’s and early 90’s, and something really struck a chord with me. The lead vocalist of one of those bands shared a story from his youth that left me feeling inspired. 

He mentioned that when he was younger, he had the incredible opportunity to meet one of his idols. And you know what, That idol took five minutes out of his day to talk with him. Five minutes that made all the difference in this young artist’s life. It left an indelible mark on his soul, shaping his future and fueling his passion for music. 

What touched me even more was that this artist, now successful and adored by millions, never forgot that moment. He made a promise to himself that if he ever had the chance, he would give back in the same way. 

And boy, did he deliver! His fans adore him not only for his talent but also for his genuine connection with them. 

It got me thinking about how some of us are blessed with opportunities to make a difference because of our status or jobs. We have the power to impact lives, even if it’s just for a few minutes. 

Yet, it breaks my heart when people don’t realize the importance of those moments. We never truly know the impact we can have on someone’s life by simply giving them our undivided attention, even for a short while. 

It could be a kind word, a listening ear, or a genuine conversation that changes their perspective, ignites their passion, or gives them the strength to keep going. So, let’s remember the power we hold within ourselves. 

Let’s be present for those around us, whether they are friends, family, or even strangers. Let’s give them the gift of our time and attention, for it may be the very thing they need to believe in themselves, to chase their dreams, or to find solace in a world that can sometimes feel cold and indifferent. 

Together, we can make a difference, one conversation at a time. Let’s be the reason someone’s life takes a positive turn, just like that lead vocalist’s life did all those years ago. 

In the end, nothing lasts forever, and if we want to be remembered 20 years from now, we should strive to leave a lasting impact through our genuine connections and acts of kindness.