Earlier this week we were talking about all the meetings and reviews we have here at work: financial reviews, production performance, quality concerns, etc, and my boss made an interesting statement.
He said “I understand the need to look at those, but if we focus on that too much it is like driving looking at the rear view mirror, we are likely to cause an accident. We need to look forward.”
That was a good warning for team, mainly in this time of the year, when we are talking about 2014 plans.
It also reminded me of an experience that I had when I was in college.
I used to commute to the school everyday, and in my sophomore year I started giving a ride to a freshman girl that lived near my parents’ house and went to the same college.
She didn’t have a license yet because in Brazil you only get it when you are 18.
So, I decided to help her practice for the driving test.
As we approached the campus, there were some low traffic areas that we drove through, so every day I would let her drive my car, and I gave her some tips.
One thing I noticed was that every time she looked at the rear view mirror, she would stare at it for several seconds, so I warned her that it was dangerous to take your eyes from the road for that long.
She should just glance at the mirror and look forward again, while the brain would process the image captured.
She got her license and a couple months later she had an accident: she was driving behind a city bus when she decided to check the rear view mirror.
By staring at it too long she didn’t notice the bus was reaching a bus stop, and had started to break.
If she had only listened to me…
Then I realized this was not a new concept.
The apostle Paul states like this in his letter to the Philippians 3:13-14:
“But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
It is a radical statement. It invites you to take this moment of your life and look ahead: what are you supposed to do to move towards your goal, from this point where you are?
It is a challenge that should make us think: What is my goal? How do I get there?
If we read the rest of that chapter in Philippians, we learn that Paul’s goal was “to know Christ… and become like Him… to win the prize for which God has called me”
What about you? What are you doing with the rest of your life?