It’s not even close to Midnight and the beginning of 2008 here in Baton Rouge, LA, but my ears are already full of exploding fireworks.  Not to mention that it’s illegal to set off fireworks here.  When has that ever stopped anyone?

 What will 2008 bring to us?  What changes will come about during this year on which we will look back on December 31, 2008, and know they made a significant difference in our lives?  The reality is that it may not seem like such a significant event at the time it happens.  Simple choices can make a huge difference over the long term.

Back during the summer of 2007 I made an off-handed comment to someone that negatively impacted a significant relationship in my life.  That derogatory comment — taking all of about 15 seconds to say — may take 15 years of reconstructing trustworthiness on my part, if it will ever happen at all.  Major choices, like a job change (which I also made during 2007), will not impact me for as long or as deeply as that damaged relationship. 

It’s important that we take care of those seemingly small decisions and choices that we face each day; that we take as much thought as we do about the big decisions in our lives.  That doesn’t always seem possible, since we may spend weeks thinking about a major decision before we commit, and we simply don’t think before some of those little choices and decisions. 

Most of us (and I know it’s true of me) would be best served to take a long time to think before speaking.