The Dash

So today at the Alltech Symposium, I listened to Dr. T. Pearse Lyons, a very innovative entrepreneur in agriculture and founder and president of Alltech. During his presentation he said many things that intrigued me. I’m only going to cover one in this post. He talked about the dash in our lives.

“The What?” is what is going through your head probably. I had the same question. What did he mean exactly? Well…he read this poem by Linda Ellis to start it off…it’s called “The Dash”

I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend he referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning to the end. He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke the following date with tears, but he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years. For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth. and now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth. For it matters not how much we own; the cars, the house, the cash, what matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash. So think about this long and hard. Are there things you’d like to change? For you never know how much time is left, that can still be rearranged. If we could just slow down enough to consider what’s true and real and always try to understand the way other people feel. And be less quick to anger, and show appreciation more and love the people in our lives like we’ve never loved before. If we treat each other with respect, and more often wear a smile remembering that this special dash might only last a little while. So, when your eulogy is being read with your life’s actions to rehash would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your dash?

After reciting this poem to his audience, Dr. Lyons proceeded to ask simple questions of us. What will you do with your dash? Did you find what you’re passionate about? And he encouraged us to have an incredible journey.
I enjoyed his presentation because it really made me think….what the Bible shows us that how we spend our days on earth are incredibly important. Those days are our dash. And our dash is only so long; we don’t know its end-point. During that dash, we have an abundance of time to interact with others and share God’s truth. We have opportunities to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the world. We have the choice to be good stewards of what the Lord has given us…and throughout our dash continue to grow and steward our gifts to serve Him.

Dr. Lyons speaks during opening session Monday.

So my challenge to myself and you today is to utilize all of the moments around us that make up our dash to love on and share with those whom we communicate with…those are the people we have direct ties to influence. But also, I want to challenge myself and you to steward the gifts which the Lord has given us to serve His ultimate plan…which is an infinite line. (Think about this…although a dash represents our life on earth, and infinite line represents the Lord’s time and our eternal life. How we spend our dash here, might just determine where our infinite line leads.) Jesus shares about stewardship of what we’ve been given in many parables…saying that for those who are faithful in little, He will trust with much. Check it out in Luke 16:1-18.

“If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also; if anyone serves Me, the Father will honor Him.” -John 12:26
…Speaking of opportunities to share the Gospel with people around the world, the Symposium has nearly 3,000 people in attendance this year, and even more exciting…the attendees are from around 74 different countries. Amazing! I’m enjoying a plethora of languages swirling around me. 🙂
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  • Hebrews 12:1

    "Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us..."
  • Continually still

  • …while runnin’ on the sidelines.

  • Romans 5:3-5

    "And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us."
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