Life is an Opportunity
The other day I read an article about a little girl who had been offered a big acting role on television. It would involve over seven months of full-on filming, during which she would be staying away from home and have to take school lessons where possible on set. One of her mother’s comments about it was that, although it was hard to let her go, it was worth it for such a ‘fantastic opportunity’.
This got me thinking about the ‘opportunities’ which have been offered to me in the past. The key ones which sprung to mind immediately were: being accepted into prestigious orchestras and playing wonderful music in world renowned concert halls; filming a ballet DVD; and winning an international writing competition. Overall, I thought, it seemed a pretty impressive list.
Shortly afterwards I read a book which was the biography of a girl who trained to be a nurse and then went on to train further to be a midwife. In the book she often addressed things as ‘opportunities’, for example being accepted onto the course, being allowed to give an injection to a patient for the first time, and deliver a baby on her own. I thought back to the things which I had classed as ‘opportunities’, and realised then that the majority of them were in the performing arts. I thought about this girl, and how unselfish she was to see helping others as an ‘opportunity’.
Then I thought, imagine if everyone saw ‘opportunities’ in life as not just in fame, recognition, and things which have the ‘wow’ factor, but in helping others. For me, that seemed like more of a ‘wow’ than any other selfish thing.
So I rethought what opportunities I have had in life, and the list seemed far more satisfying. To equip me I’ve had open doors to a loving and caring family, an education, friends, food, health care, leaders, teachers and much, much more. These things have all involved people who have had the ‘opportunity’ to help me, and open that ‘opportunity’ for me to help others like myself in the future. As it says in Colossians 4:5 “Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity.”
It reminds me of the parable Jesus tells us of the Good Samaritan, in the way these people have taken the ‘opportunity’ to take time and help me, rather than being selfish and walking on by. Let us strive to be like the Good Samaritan also, for these people are just as, if not more, important than any famous person. They, to me, are all celebrities.
All of the contents of my previous list are still great, and they have shaped me in a way I would not have been without them. But alone they are hollow, worthless things without the rest of the new list added. Now, when the important, fulfilled ‘opportunities’ are in place as well, it can at last feel full, for the joy does not leave these little things afterwards.
God gave us the ‘opportunity’ to serve Him. He placed the ‘opportunity’ in our hands to do good in this world. So let us treat every chance, every ‘opportunity’, as important. Take the ‘opportunity’, and use it. Someone once said to Mother Theresa, “Surely your work is just a drop in the ocean of need.” And her reply was, “Yes, but the ocean is made up of tiny drops.” Together, if we open our eyes to the whole spectrum of ‘opportunity’, we can do something great.
Today, we have the ‘opportunity’ to worship God. I have the ‘opportunity’ to share this with you now. Whatever we have been called by God to do, we have been blessed with an ‘opportunity’, in this world full of (wait for it!) ‘opportunities’. In Galatians 6:10, it says: “So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.”
God will supply us with the ‘opportunity’, but it is up to us to do something with it.
Today is an ‘opportunity’. Tomorrow is an ‘opportunity’. Life is an ‘opportunity’. God gave us life, and if that is not enough of an opportunity, what is?
“Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.”
– Mother Teresa