As a teen, I wish I had spent less time complaining and more time affirming; less time worrying about my image and seeking to please others; less time being concerned about propriety and convention, and more time striving for authenticity and courage.
I wish I had spent less time trying to win arguments and more time developing relationships; less time focused on things, more time focused on people and ideas; less time on my wants and more time on others’ needs; less time acquiring and more time giving and serving; less time being busy and more time reflecting, praying and seeking solitude.
I wish I had spent less time in our suburban cocoon and more time in the city, the country and the world; more time at the family farm.
I wish I had spent less time being parochial and more time gaining a worldview. I wish I had spent more time asking my parents and grandparents and other family members questions about their lives, philosophies, regrets, passions and accomplishments.
I wish I had spent more time dating girls who may have been less attractive, but deep in character and substance. I wish I had spent more time seeking out people who were spilled upon and marginalized, more time getting to know people different from me.
I wish I had spent more time painting, practicing tennis, the trumpet and the piano; more time fishing; more time laughing and learning good jokes; more time looking for opportunities; more time learning to read better; more time studying the Bible.
I wish I had spent more time developing my capacity to love. I wish I had spent less time on me and my will and more time on God and God’s will.