When I was young, I didn’t want to be. I was always trying to grow up ahead of schedule. I didn’t particularly like school and I started working in my dad’s retail stores at a very young age. I felt more grown up when I was at work.
I remember just waiting to be able to drive so that I could get my own jobs and be truly independent. Next, of course, I just wanted to graduate high school because then I would be on my own and be able to make my own decisions. We scurry through milestones like turning 18, then 21, buying our first car that doesn’t break down on every street corner, the first real career job, getting married, buying (or borrowing) our first home, and creating our own little humans that just want to be grown up and independent as well.
Now I am grown up. I am not only independent, but have many dependents. And time is flying.
We Subconsciously Always Look To The Next Thing
Yet, occasionally I still find myself wishing my life away.
- I am waiting for the cold season to be over so that warmth and greenery can sprout.
- If I can just get through this stressful week, work will settle down.
- I can’t wait until we go on the big trip this summer.
- When all of my kids graduate high school we will have less to do, more time, more money.
Then I look back and wonder… where did the time go? I reminisce over picture albums of my kids just starting to walk. I go back to school to finally enjoy the power of education and learning. I try to remember when my back started hurting just from standing up for a long time or bending over to clean up.
Time is important. At least on this side of eternity.
Eternity Gives Us A Different Perspective On Time
I get comfort knowing that we have eternity with Jesus. It is powerful. Coming to Christ has given me a different relationship with time. I wish I could say that I have quit wishing my life away, but that would be an exaggeration. I do know that knowing Jesus has changed a lot for me, though.
The things that I used to worry about as being so important now have a different perspective for me through the lens of God. I am not hurrying for the next promotion, or blindly trying to achieve the next milestone. It is conscious. I have to consciously remind myself of these things:
- Slow down– It is about the day and the moments God has given us; not about a milestone or an achievement.
- Be present – I hurried to get to this, whatever this may be, and I need to feel and experience this or all of the hurrying to get here is pointless.
- Please God – If I want to please God, it will be in the moment, not in the future. It will be about living out His plan and what He has for me today.
- Love– since this is our main purpose in life, it requires the here and now. Loving others can start now. It doesn’t have to wait for someday.
- Make a Difference -In God’s kingdom, everything is measured differently. We can make a difference by loving someone today. We can make a difference by telling someone about Jesus in this moment. We can create a ripple effect by raising and nurturing our children now, rather than achieving some big goal.
Success comes from a trail of moments. Obviously, if success is achieved, however you define it, you did well in the moments. The question is... were you present in that time?
Were You Present In The Moments?
Did you enjoy it? Did you experience the pain and hard work to make it even more meaningful? Did you feel like you were living a life of purpose on the way to your destination?
If not, it isn’t too late. It is about each moment God gives us.
It’s okay to set goals and to work toward new seasons in life. And there is meaning in all circumstance and emotion of the day.
Last weekend was a good weekend even though I would not categorize it as fun in any way. Nothing life-altering. Mundane actually. We are having some remodeling done, so our house is a wreck. I just want it to be done. I am ready for two more weeks to pass and to be able to cook in my shiny new kitchen. But instead of wishing my life away, I decided to live in the moment.
I cleaned closets, organized rooms, scrubbed appliances. And if you know me, you would know that is not anywhere in my fun book. But as I sit here this morning writing this, I feel like I participated in this long wished for re-model. I have dreamed of updating our kitchen since we moved in more than 10 years ago. We are finally doing it. Yes, I hope it gets done quickly and that I am cooking for Christmas. But I don’t want to wish away another 3 weeks of this scare resource called time.
Instead, I want to experience the moments, because getting to this place was filled with seasons of life we had to get through first before we could do what we are now. We had to consume many years to get to this place. I don’t want to just wish my life away and fly through another journey just to get to the destination. I will be present even though I have had to eat out for over a week now. I will sit in my home and enjoy the blessings God has provided even if I need a box of Claritin and Kleenex to pamper my dust and paint-filled sinuses.
And I will work hard to stay in the moment and cherish the life God has given me…not wish it away for the next milestone or new season.
How about you? What season are you in? Are you on the journey or enjoying the destination? Are you making the most of the days God has given you?