Stop and Smell the Roses

Atlanta sunrise.

I took this picture on my phone last week from my office in Atlanta. The view was stunning; I had to stop and capture the moment.

Most days follow the same routine: make the commute in, park in the deck, take the elevator up, and walk to my desk. I do all this with my eyes down, focused on what is immediately ahead of me.

Last Friday, however, I was reminded of one thing: I forget to stop and smell the roses.

With work especially I can get so single-minded; so zeroed-in on one goal.

I see what’s ahead of me (a task, an ambition, an objective) and blur out the things around me that I can experience along the way.

I noticed this same trend as I was hiking in Morocco earlier this month. I became so fixed on my steps that I failed to reflect on my surroundings. I soon realized there was a measure of intentionality that I needed to realize in those situations. When I stopped and looked around, it was refreshing.

God wants to show us His beauty everyday. Where are we setting our sights?

::

In what area do you need to just “stop” and look around?

48 Comments

  • Moe

    September 30, 2011

    I think my post on Wednesday was my wake up call to “pay attention”. Why, because there is a lot of beauty and a lot of need out there. Like you, I have been known to put my head down and walk forward.

    Thanks for the reminder. By the way, have you ever drank these? They are wonderful: http://www.nakedjuice.com/

    Reply
    • Jon

      September 30, 2011

      LOL….

      Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      Yeah that post was serious. One of your best.

      Also, those are awesome. How am I not surprised?

      Reply
      • Irish

        July 19, 2016

        Your post captures the issue peftycrle!

        Reply
      • http://www./

        August 11, 2016

        Keep these articles coming as they’ve opened many new doors for me.

        Reply
      • thanks for your reply but your reply itself just shows how little you know about the arguments involved.Personally I’m not fussed one way or another about whether people keep animals as pets or not. Though I think dog owners who can not control their dogs should be put to sleep rather than the dogs themsleves.If you want to keep a pet then do so but buy them from reputable and licenced dealers and not one day pop-up shows that offer opportunites for un-sustainable supplies to enter the market.Kevin

        Reply
      • http://www./

        October 23, 2016

        Shut up you all. If you want to make the site better, do not say "i hate it" and start TO GAVE FEEDBACK BEFORE THEY CHANGE. SAY WHAT IS NOT GOOD and do not say only "I HATE IT". P.S.: I LIKE IT, KEEP THE GOOD WORK, CAUSE MAKE CHANGES LIKE THIS IS NOT EASY.

        Reply
      • talkenglish.com

        October 28, 2016

        If you 301 to mobile content (m.domain.com) and should provide a route for users to get to the full version, doesn't the 301 cache in the browser and cause the user to get sent back to the mobile version over and over and over… no matter how many times the user clicks 'View full site'???

        Reply
      • http://www./

        December 30, 2016

        Helpful Article…Very nice post. I simply stumbled upon your blog and wanted to mention that I have truly loved surfing around your blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing in your feed and I hope you write again soon!…

        Reply
      • I’m so glad that the internet allows free info like this!

        Reply
      • http://www.mycheatgold.pro/

        February 24, 2017

        Gern senden wir Ihnen unverbindlich ein günstiges Angebot zu. In unserem umfangreichen Klassenfahrten- Programm () finden wir auf jeden Fall das Richtige für Ihre Gruppe.Mit freundlichen Grüßen Ihr – Team

        Reply
      • smartsource coupons

        March 22, 2017

        Good job on pointing out that the Romans more or less had early factories. I think it helps to debunk the myth that the Roman Empire was technologically and economically stagnant. The real key with steam power was the development of pistons and other such parts, made possible with the development of good machine tools. Before that, steam power was too difficult and inefficient to harness.

        Reply
  • Jon Stolpe

    September 30, 2011

    Cool picture!

    I think I need to stop and smell the roses with my kids. They are growing so fast, and it seems like we are running from one activity to the next to the next to the next… you get the idea. I want to remember, appreciate, and hang on to these days.

    Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      Excellent example. So often parents say, “I can’t wait for….this stage in life.” Instead, let’s cherish the moment… right now. Thanks for the reminder, Jon.

      Reply
  • Brandon

    September 30, 2011

    Great stuff!

    Reply
  • ThatGuyKC

    September 30, 2011

    I grew up on Whidbey Island and very often would take the beautiful surroundings for granted.

    The eyes forward or on the pavement in front of me is a common occurrence living in Seattle.

    Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      Wow, those Whidbey Island pictures were amazing. Do you ever go back?

      Reply
  • Ryan Tate

    September 30, 2011

    In what area do you need to just “stop” and look around? – with my wife.

    I can get into such an internally focused cycle of craving growth that I leave my wife in the dust. Running forward after “good” things, I’ve left the “best” thing behind me.

    Right now is a crazy overwhelmingly busy time for us. We’re having a baby next week, our third. She’s exhausted and anxious, and I’ve gotten into a cycle of being overly internally focused. I need to stop, look at her, and be with her.

    Thank you for showing me the sunrise this morning.

    (P.S. Sorry about the Braves)

    Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      Congrats on #3 – welcome to the club! :)

      I’ve been guilty of what you said as well. Being engaged at the moment is so important.

      Reply
  • Larry Hehn

    September 30, 2011

    I’ve been out of work for a month now, so most of my time has been spent indoors, face to a screen, job hunting and writing. The weather has been so beautiful here lately, I’ve made a point of going outside every once in a while to enjoy it. It would be so easy to keep my head down all day and miss it.

    Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      Thanks for sharing, Larry – while we shouldn’t discount “what needs to be/get done”, we should forsake the beauty around us.

      Reply
      • Geraldine

        November 17, 2016

        I’m not easily imesspred. . . but that’s impressing me! :)

        Reply
    • Keri

      September 30, 2011

      Larry…I didn’t know you were out of work. I’m sorry to hear that. :( I pray that God provides something quickly in which you can use all of your skills.

      What you said really resonated with me-just going outside and enjoying the beauty of Creation. I’ve found that it gives me renewed energy and gratitude with which to face the day. AND, it takes my eyes off that stinking to-do list. We’ve had an unseasonably amazing September this year and I’ve been getting the boys out to the park and the beach every chance we get. Sure, it’s meant some other things have been left undone. But, I’ve been able to have special moments with them and appreciate the beauitful place that we live in. Thanks for the reminder.

      Reply
  • Jason Wert

    September 30, 2011

    Everywhere. ‘Cause people keep telling me God is working and I can’t see it. :)

    Reply
  • Jon

    September 30, 2011

    Probably with others. I’ve been so busy and overwhelmed with job hunting…I haven’t been really paying attention to the people God has placed in my lives.

    Love the pic!

    Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      Thanks, Jon. I’m the same way sometimes – in fact, there are even people God continually brings back into my life, as if to remind me, “Hey dude, this person matters. Pay attention!” :)

      Reply
  • Jason Vana

    September 30, 2011

    I’m a lot like you in that, when I’m on my way to work, or the store, or any place that I have a goal or purpose to be going, I tend to ignore the things around me and hyper focus. I know I have missed a lot by doing that.

    Thanks for the reminder to pick my head up and enjoy what is around me!

    Reply
    • Dustin

      September 30, 2011

      You’re welcome. As always, thanks for sharing Jason.

      Reply
  • Keri

    September 30, 2011

    Love this >> God wants to show us His beauty everyday. Where are we setting our sights?

    I need to read that every day. It’s a call to action to position my heart to see what He wants me to see. Not to simply focus on my to-do list and all I need to accomplish. But, to see what He has for me to learn, so I can become more like Him. What better way is there to share His love? Really inspiring and challenging, Dustin!

    Reply
    • Dustin

      October 4, 2011

      thanks for commenting, keri – i like how you put it >> how do we position our hearts?

      Reply
    • Jodi

      November 17, 2016

      If not for your writing this topic could be very counvloted and oblique.

      Reply
    • uhaul rent trailer

      January 24, 2017

      Llegue a vosotros a través de un comentario en la entrada que Sobrarbenses.com realizo sobre el Zapatito. Buena iniciativa la de crear un blog en la escuela, en este caso de Bielsa, bella población de nuestro querido pirineo oscense.Saludos y gracias por vuestro comentario.Gollus.

      Reply
    • kredit für hausbau trotz

      February 7, 2017

      #15 In the Pacific islands, locals put "lime" in it. They chew it with their betelnut and pepper leaf. It's been practiced for many, many years. Where's my $10???

      Reply
    • They are such cuties:) I had all kinds of ideas about what I would do as a mom… but somehow the rulebook gets tossed out along the way and you do what you have to do!Please stop by my Blog for a Cure Blog Party next week if you get a chance!www.whoknewreviews.blogspot.com

      Reply
  • Jenny

    September 30, 2011

    just life in general… stopping to take notice.

    I used to live outside of Atlanta and I think I know where this is – stunning picture!

    Reply
    • Dustin

      October 4, 2011

      office is in vinings. cool thing is that happens quite often :)

      Reply
  • jenn

    September 30, 2011

    I think I need to remember this with everything in my life right now. I’m so busy with school that it is easy to just let life rush on by. I need to stop and notice Shiloh and all the other wonderful things God puts in my life everyday.

    Reply
    • Dustin

      October 4, 2011

      I completely agree w/ kids – it’s so easy to want the “next stage” b/c as cliche as it is, they are big and grown up in no time.

      Reply
  • Jim F

    September 30, 2011

    I live in a pretty rural area and I walk to work – about 300 yards – I know it is not far but far enough to see the beauty all around. Now when I walk over to my study and when I drive places I get to notice a lot in nature. Many times I get too focused and walk over or drive not looking at the beauty that is all around.

    Reply
    • Dustin

      October 4, 2011

      i think walking to work would be really cool …. i won’t be doing that anytime soon. :) i feel like doing trail runs do the same thing for me (when they happen, not that i’ve done a run like that in quite some time!)

      Reply
  • Loren Pinilis

    October 1, 2011

    You hit the nail on the head when you said we need to be intentional about viewing our surroundings. I’m like you – it’s not something I naturally do.

    Reply
  • Luther Wesley

    October 2, 2011

    I to often put my head down and and either go like a bull in a china shop or have my head down to block out those around me. Either way it is wrong as there is so much beauty in God’s creation that He has given us to enjoy, there are those with needs that can only be met by those who know Christ, or I do more damage by plowing ahead instead of thinking.

    Stop and smell the roses but watch out for the fertilizer

    Reply
    • Dustin

      October 4, 2011

      watch out for the fertilizer… LOL :)

      Reply
  • Tom

    October 3, 2011

    Great reminder and picture Dustin! I too realize this when I run. I have been into trail running lately and catch myself with eyes down or running too fast I forget to look around at God’s beauty, blessings and teachings. There are times we have to watch our steps but if we don’t have time or the pace to take in God and His Spirit we are just missing out and focused on the wrong thing! Bless you!

    Reply

Leave a Reply