You wouldn’t likely know the name June Hoffman, but as the sister of one of the most famous men in history, she has such a unique vantage point that her words have become compelling to me. I recently caught the PBS NOVA documentary “First Man on the Moon”, which (of course) chronicles the life of her brother, Neil Armstrong. He had his share of compelling words, too, including, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” I vividly remember sitting with my family on the living room floor (July 20, 1969) watching, along with the rest of the world, the grainy black-and-white images of Armstrong stepping off the ladder of the Eagle lunar module–and stepping into history.
Work as an Idol
Those who knew Neil Armstrong best knew him to be a workaholic for most of his life. Without a doubt, his accomplishments required focused and dedicated energy, and our world is a better place because of his hard work. But his family knew him to never let up. Work, work, work. Finding work and making up work to stay busy. Relationships suffered.
Here’s what June said: “His calendar was double-parked all the time.” I think those are compelling words, and they make me look at my life. I think about that a lot lately. Some things are missing in my calendar because some other things are crowding them out.
A Call for Margin
There’s some good news. Neil Armstrong landed well, and not just on the moon. In his later years he slowed down and made the margin for others and himself. Those who knew him best say he figured it out, calibrating his calendar and life in a way that made margin for what mattered most.
Consider your own calendar with this verse as you go into the weekend: And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath (Mark 2:27).
How can you create margin in your life for the things that matter most?