Give the gift of time in the New Year

Give the gift of time in the New Year

As we all rushed around getting ready for family visits, good home cooked food, the buying and exchanging of sought-after gifts, and travel to celebrate Christmas with those we love the most, how many of us became worn out, tired, physically ill, and sometimes blue? For some, it seemed that we just could not get everything we wanted to do accomplished within the tight deadlines, or that we did not have the money we wanted to spend, or we could not get home at all. As I observed and visited with those I love the most, I saw some tired faces, concern about finances and sadness. I vowed to do better next year.

One of my children suggested a cruise for the entire family as our Christmas gifts to each other. I am on board with that idea and think it would be great fun. I am going to look into that idea in the coming days.

While thinking on this subject of time, I took a good, long, hard look at my own busy schedule and the fact that I am guilty of cramming too much into every waking hour trying to get it all in. I want to slow down. (I realize family and friends are probably laughing about now, but I am serious) The best gift I can gift or receive is the gift of time. A dear friend from my past sent me this writing and it fit so well with what the dear Lord had put on my heart.


On his deathbed, Alexander the Great summoned his trusted generals and told them his three ultimate wishes: (1.) The best doctors should carry his coffin. (2.) The wealth he had accumulated (including money, gold and precious stones) should be scattered along the procession from the church to the cemetery where his body would be placed. (3.) His hands should be let loose, so that they hung outside the coffin for all to see.

One of his generals who was very surprised by these unusual requests asked Alexander to please explain his reasoning and his requests.

Here is what Alexander the Great had to say: “I want the best doctors to carry my coffin to demonstrate that in the face of death, even the best doctors in the world have no power to heal. I want the road to be covered with my treasure so that everyone that sees the material wealth acquired here on earth will stay on earth. It really does not go with you. I want my hands to swing in the wind, so that people clearly understand that we come into this world empty handed and we will leave this world empty handed after we have exhausted the most precious treasure of all – time.


We must remember that we do not take any material wealth with us to the grave and that truly time is our greatest resource and treasure, and ye t, we squander it away doing meaningless and mundane things. Time is limited, and when we give someone our time, we are actually giving away a portion of our life that we will never take back. Out time is our life.

The very best present we can give to our family and friends is our time. May God impress on our hearts this valuable thought and help us to be conscious of how we spend this resource in the coming twelve months.

Have a happy and blessed New Year 2016.


Brenda Cannon Henley can be reached at (409) 781-8788 or at brendacannonhenley [at] yahoo [dot] com.