A few weeks ago I was having dinner at my grandma’s apartment and my sister said something offhanded about something that she couldn’t wait for. My grandma, who will be 92 this year and has lived through the Great Depression, the Second World War and more life than I can imagine, looked up at us with world weary eyes and said “Don’t wish your life away.”
Don’t wish your life away. That’s what I do, isn’t it? When I spend my week thinking about my plans for the weekend. When I spent my college years looking forward to having a “real job” and when I spend my single years looking forward to being married.
I don’t know where I got this idea, but in the back of my mind I’ve always had this picture of what it will look like when I finally “arrive” at the place that God wants me to be. Sometimes it comes in the form of a perfect husband and marriage. Sometimes it looks like a full library of books in my dream house. Other times it’s the idea of a job that both excites and fulfills me and makes me thrilled to get out of bed each morning.
And I know I’m still quite young comparatively speaking, but even at (almost) 23, I’ve begun to feel disillusioned with it all. Perhaps it’s reality setting in or maybe I’m getting cynical, but I don’t think that moment will come.
But what if this life is not about attaining anything? What if “God’s Will” isn’t the summit of the mountain but the entirety of the journey? What if the first fumbling steps off the grassy plains are as monumental as the moment when we arrive, light headed and exhausted at the peak?
“We have the idea that God is leading us toward a particular end or a desired goal, but He is not. The question of whether or not we arrive at a particular goal is of little importance, and reaching it becomes merely an episode along the way. What we see as only the process of reaching a particular end, God sees as the goal itself.” (Oswald Chambers)
In the church, we hear a lot about God’s will. But too often we think of it as something to work towards. We spend so much time trying to decipher God’s will before we make the big decisions. What college to go to, what job to take, who to marry. I would even say we obsess over getting the big things right. And of course those things matter, but a few key decisions do not encompass the whole of God’s will for your life.
After all, every big decision is just a lot of little decisions put together. Every marriage starts with a first conversation. Every career starts with the thought that “Maybe I would be good at this.”
So why aren’t we concerned about God’s will with every conversation, every idle musing, every seemingly inconsequential decision we make? Why isn’t it the first thought on our minds every day? Shouldn’t it be?
I’m not saying that I’m there yet, though I wish I could say that. But that’s what I want my life to be defined by- a lot of todays lived in simple obedience to where God leads me. Not a life of vain planning for to do God’s will when I’m ready.
This isn’t another Carpe Diem (#yolo) rant. This is about something more than just sucking the life out of every moment. This is about bringing life to every moment.
Because today matters.
“Choose this day whom you will serve.. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15 ESV)
“Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears us up; God is our salvation. Selah” (Psalm 68:19)
“Give us this day our daily bread.” (Matthew 6:11)