Are we just chasing life?

“I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.” – John 10:10

Last week, in the midst of the crazy that comes with living through a pandemic, keeping two little boys busy, homeschooling, working full-time from home, and, and, and… a little question popped into my mind: In years from now, when I look back on life will I be proud of how I spent my best years?

At first, I thought what a silly thought and ignored it. But the more days that passed, the more I found the question creeping up on me, until a few days ago, I was listening to a Joyce Meyer’s podcast which seemed to shift something in my mind. In her podcast, she touches on many things that felt very relevant, but the one that really stood out was the fact that if you’re the sort of person that is always in a hurry and are impatient, you’re going to have a hard time accepting God’s timing.

We all know and say that God’s timing is perfect, but this is something we tend to say in hindsight, but what about when we’re in the trenches of life? When we’re waiting, wishing, hoping and praying for something to happen?

I have spoken time and time again about how much I have wanted to move overseas but each time we start discussing our plans to pursue our big dream, something happens. After a long wait of more than 2-years, I finally received the call that I have been waiting for from home affairs, telling me that the outstanding paperwork I needed for my passport application was finally ready to be collected – only, they called the day before lockdown… and well, we all know how that has gone.

Truthfully, I have felt so frustrated; I am just sort of stuck in limbo, wondering whether we should stay or go and trying to consider whether we should buy a house or leave the country, and in the midst of it all, I find myself navigating a tricky schooling situation which has put pressure on these questions because it’s a matter of; do I move my kids to new schools now and risk moving them again in a few months, or do I leave them in their school and risk staying longer than we had intended?

I liked the example Joyce gave in her teaching, (she referenced this example being part of Joel’s teachings), where they speak about how our cars come equipped with GPS mapping systems, all with the ability to direct us and tell us when to turn left or right, to get to our destination. Unfortunately, life doesn’t come with the same sort of mapping capabilities and we might find ourselves on a dead-straight road, not quite sure whether we’re lost or just on the straight and narrow toward our destination. Like me, I am sure you’ve probably found yourself really frustrated by the fact that God isn’t prompting us and telling us where to go next. I can’t begin to tell you how often I have said to God that if He would just tell me where to go, I will be obedient

(But truthfully, God has spoken many times to me about this and perhaps the real problem is that I haven’t always liked what He had to say – but that’s a post for another day.) 

She then goes on to talk about how in Genesis, the Bible describes how God took 6 days to create the earth, but have you ever thought why He did not create it all in one day when He really could if he wanted to? Here is where the secret lies – God didn’t create the earth in a day, because He wanted to enjoy the process. 

Sometimes, we are so focused on the destination, so impatient about finally getting to that point – losing weight, paying off debt, getting that promotion, reaching the next parenting milestone, or for me, moving overseas – that we forget all about the importance of the journey. God promises us a life of abundance and we know that He is constantly at work in our lives. So, why are we so guilty of chasing life instead of living it?

This isn’t anything new to me; I have spoken before about how often I find myself asking what’s next, after reaching a massive milestone and how my mom and husband have tried telling me to enjoy the moment, to let my achievements sink in before moving onto the next thing. But as someone who is task-orientated, I find myself constantly needing this reminder; God did not create the Earth in a day, because He wanted to enjoy the process. 

So, to answer my question from the beginning of the post:

One day, when I look back on life, I hope that I didn’t spend my best years chasing life but rather living it. It’s not about where to next, but rather, what now. It means pausing and realizing that the world won’t combust if I step away from my desk or take a bit longer to reply to an email. It means ignoring the dishes for an extra 20 minutes to play with my kids, but more than the tiny moments that make up my best years, it means giving up living in limbo and choosing to live in right now, while trusting God to help figure out the rest.

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