Family Sacrifice

This weekend I was reminded of why your family needs to be a priority in your life. We are all busy. We are all distracted. We are all stressed in ways. We are all running at 9000 rpms. It’s what life has become for most of us. It’s the new normal now. I’m not saying it’s right or wrong, it just is what it is.


This weekend my family and I made a quick decision to go watch my brothers last football game of the season. He is a college football coach so this time of year we don’t see him much and we have come to get used to that. We have made it ok to just not see he or his family for a few months. Until this weekend.


We all (7 of us) jumped on a plane and headed to Texas without him knowing we were coming. We got to the field about 30 minutes before the game and caught his attention right before they headed out to the field. His look was priceless. Seeing all of his family there for him was something that definitely meant a lot. Something of true value to him. It is love. It’s what really matters. We all know this but that cemented that into my brain in that moment.


The whole thing went great and we had a great time and headed back to Iowa after the game. It was then that I really had the chance to fully understand what that day was all about. It’s moments like that, that truly tell more to someone else than any words. Showing people you care and that you love them is about what you are willing to sacrifice for them. Whether it’s time, energy, focus, love, attention, listening, or your physical resources; it’s that sacrifice that is really the value. They not only see it but they feel it. You put them before your busy life or your other circumstances. You made them the priority.


This has made me reflect a little bit on what I have sacrificed for others in my life. It’s kind of humbling at how much I DON’T give of myself to others that are important in my life. The times I have chosen work over THEM. The times I have chosen a stressful situation over THEM when it steals my attention. The times I have chosen the easy thing over THEM when a tough conversation needs to happen. The times I have chosen other people over THEM when I have allowed the others to steal my time.  You get the point. There are a lot of ways that we make decisions that don’t provide value to those in our life that we truly care about.


My challenge to you is to make some sacrifices this week in your life that give back to the people that are important. Whether it be more time, more focus, more intentional energy, buying someone a small something to show you care or just picking up the phone and making a call to let them know you are thinking about them. It doesn’t have to be a big thing. It just has to be a sacrifice of something that is not the easy thing to do.


The trick to this is that the more you do it the more it becomes who you are and what you do. Not only do the others feel your love but you will feel more of that yourself.  We all need this. Do your part. You will thank yourself for it and your relationships will become real again.  They are what create true fulfillment. Start making sacrifices today. Start small. They will spread like fire.

Brett McDonough