The VOICE of Inspiration

By Don Lindsey

When I turned 18 years old, I remember my oldest brother saying to me “welcome to the rat race.”  I still get a laugh out of that, but the implication was clear; I was an adult now, and responsibilities would take up a considerable chunk of my time.

Having dropped out of high school at 17, I already had a job and experience with punching a clock and earning money.  Later at 25, I got a GED and started classes at a technical school.  These accomplishments led me to believe that I knew what my brother meant, but I still had no clue and wouldn’t until years later.  What I took away from that period, however, was that everyday rituals such as work and school can be consuming and could lead to missing opportunities that would make your life better.  When I first got out of high school, I thought that showing up for work and collecting a paycheck was the rat race.  When I started looking for more education and worked to balance a job and school, that was my rat race.  Once I moved to Florida, I thought it was being a father, husband, son, and friend.  What I’ve learned is that my definition of the term “rat race” means staying busy and as it turns out, that’s a positive thing.

When I think back to my 20’s, working and school just got in the way of my party time with friends, so I saw the work experience as a negative.  Looking ahead to now, staying busy is a wonderful thing because it’s how I interact with the people I love.  I take my kids to school in the morning and have some time to chat with them.  When my parents wake up, I take some time to spend with them, my wife and I talk as much as we can through the day, and that’s on top of any appointments my parents or kids have.  I probably have more to do in a day now than I ever have but I’m also the happiest I’ve ever been, and I think the reason is because of that rat race idea that I grew to despise back when I wore a younger man’s clothes.

For me, it all comes back to looking for blessings as they pop up during the day.  God grants a lot of those blessings and when I don’t see them, it’s because I’m too focused on whatever task is in front of me.  That was my biggest issue when I was younger as well and as a result, I do not have a lot of good memories from those years because I was too concerned with my daily routine.  While that leaves me disappointed in myself to say the least, I’m also very grateful that with age, I’m noticing how great my life is.  Sure it’s busy and it’s a rat race, but I wouldn’t change it for anything.  God bless.


Don Lindsey is a follower of Christ, son, husband, father, and a survivor.  Originally from Dayton Ohio, and resident of Apopka for six years, Don sees his life as a dedication to his wife, parents, children, and community.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Rats! Ya dirty rat! The rat race, and then there is of coarse, the rat king. There have been documented instances of rats, numbering from a few to as many as 32, becoming bound together by their tails in a living mass. This then is the rat king. Think of it in the sense that everything you do, everywhere you go, you are so entwined with the “others” in your group or society you cannot move or function without dragging those others along with you. What an absolute horror! This would not be cooperation, it would be enslavement. Everyone working toward a common goal for the enrichment and benefit for all is one thing, but being unable to think for yourself is another, and not at all what God has in mind for His children. Blessings on you and your Donnie. Chaz

  2. Very true unfortunately. I’m finding that the rat race is what you make it as is the case with life in general. If I am only paying attention to the direction that I’m going in and do not take the time to enjoy all of the beautiful scenery unfolding around me then I miss what the Lord put me here for, I believe and that reason is to love, serve and bless.

    After reading your comment, I remembered a book that I read many, many moons ago called King Rat. I have always seen that book as an example of how focusing on yourself and only that may make you physically comfortable for a short amount of time, but that self centered mindset can bring down the environment around you.

    Thanks for the comment Chuck and God bless you and yours my friend.

  3. Dear Mama Mia, sorry, they are not pack rats. They are Rattus Norveticus, or the common Norway rat. They probably make your skin crawl for a very good reason. These sweet little guys are what introduced the bubonic plaque which at one time wiped out half of the european population. Well, it wasn’t really the rat, he was just the carrier of the fleas that carried the plaque. I thought you would appreciate the info. Chaz

  4. Mr. Towne, It doesn’t matter to me the species of the rat. It doesn’t matter to me if they are pack rats, swamp rats, Norway rats, field rats, subway rats, gym rats, roof rats, or hood rats, as they all are rats, and creepy to me, and I don’t plan on hanging around to examine the subtle differences of their species to correctly identify them, if I happen to see any of them…lol Thanks for the info however!

  5. Well, I like the “Charming Tails” figurines of cute little mice action figures, but that is as far as it will go with me…no real ones!

  6. I meant “Charming Tales”, as that is the actual name of those mice figurines, instead of “Charming Tails” like I previously stated. I have a couple of them. I do like that kind of junk. I have one that is two little mice, a girl/boy mice couple that are inside of a lady’s high heel shoe, and another of a little mice that is wearing a king’s cloak, a crown, and has a king’s wand in his paw….you know one person’s junk is another person’s treasure…..lol

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