Stephen recently lost a lot of weight from watching his diet and exercising. He had made a dramatic change to his lifestyle and now looks fighting fit. A couple of months ago, we met the former Staff Sergeant of the Commando Unit that he belonged to, when he was in the army. Oh yes, Stephen used to be a Commando with a red beret! Anyway, Staff Sergeant Seah stopped to chat with us, as we had our breakfast. He said he was happy to see that Stephen is keeping to a regular fitness regime. He only cautioned that it was necessary to “complete not compete”.
He is right. We hear of so many people who have dropped dead even before reaching 50 years! They push themselves to better their times, to get ahead of the one in front of them and, often, they accidentally beat the clock of life way before their time.
Those words played around in my mind for a while. I see that it is also an apt description to life. I know that many go about in a perpetual competition. They wake up each day with no inkling of what really matters. Their sole purpose is to compare and compete to win. They cannot wait to shout that their home is bigger. Their job pays more. Their spouse is better looking. Their car has a higher capacity. Even their continent is better! They are the ones that say such high faluting stuff like their mansion is just “a humble abode” or that their BMW is old because it’s last year’s model or that their holiday destination is pending because they can’t decide yet.
Life is a journey for us to complete. The competing is not going to change the fact that when we die, our journey is complete. If we spend all that time, living to compete with those around us, then we miss what is important.
I think that even before I met Staff Sergeant Seah, I already knew that in the race of life, I have to run to complete and not compete. Okay, I'm going to be running along now.