A Time to Search and a Time to Give Up

reading glasses

When was the last time you had to search for something? This morning? Your car keys? Your blue tie with the white and yellow speckled pattern? Your last pair of pantyhose that doesn't have a run in them? Your history class bibliography? It was in the E:/History/Professor Winthrope folder on your jump drive last night!

Searching is a periodic pastime for all of us at times. For some folks it can be a daily occurance. Or even more frequent. To lose or misplace something is common place. Have you ever considered how the seconds and minutes of your life can add up on mundane tasks like this? Suppose you spend 7 and a half minutes - 450 seconds on average, each day of your life searching for something you need, or want?

450 Seconds doesn't sound so bad.

  • Times 365 days per year = 164,250 seconds
  • Times life of 81 years = 13,304,250 seconds.
  • Which translates back to 3,695+ Hours
  • Or nearly 154 days of your life.

Wow! Imagine spending over 5 months of your life, just searching for something.

But what happens when you find it? What happens when you find your car keys in your old jacket pocket, left from your trip for lawnmower gas last night? It's a Eureka moment. Sometimes with intense relief, sometimes just with gladness that the search is over.

Searching can take may forms. For items, stuff. For information and research. Which HD TV is the best and most affordable? Which store has the best deal on kids clothes when the budget is strained? For truth or spiritual enlightenment? It can be fun, or frustrating.

Nonetheless, our lives will continue to have a need, for a time to search.

There can also be a time to stop searching. A time to give up. That sounds like defeat. Remember what you heard as a kid, "no one likes a quitter".

Perhaps it is not as clear as that. Have you ever been so intent searching for the TV remote, that you missed your son's phone call to tell he was picked for the varsity team? Did you miss that moment when your daughter stepped out of the bathroom to show you her prom dress, because you were searching for the camera?

Minor examples that can be reclaimed. What if your searching led to greater consequences? You are driving in your car, and can't find that CD above the visor? Hmmmm, 70 mph in the middle lane, heavy commute traffic, that fellow tailgating you, and you can't find the CD? Is this a time to search, or a time to give up and resume the search later?

sunset blue black sky

Are there ever searches that you should give up. For good? How about searches that lead down a path with destructive ends? Searches that discover past family secrets, long since forgotten, though resolved at the time, which would injure reputations today? Is there value pursuing this search? If not, it may be time to give up the search.

To everything there is a season, a time to search and a time to give up.

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