Last year’s journey into self exploration and improvement lead into further discoveries on how to make the best of what I’ve got. So often, we get bogged down in pursuing things, and we lose sight of the fact that we’re at where we’re at for a reason. The major question in my life in 2016 has been akin to what the angel asked Elijah when he fled from Jezabel after defeating the prophets of Baal: Why are you here?
The immediate answer seemed obvious: because I’ve worked hard to get here, and I want life to stay healthy, balanced, and happy. Happy doesn’t always mean riding an emotional high. Sometimes, it means simply enjoying life and the things that make up every day. Good enough, but this led me to dig deeper to figure out why the Lord has me at this place in life right now, and to specifically ponder if there are things I’m pursuing that I already have, but I’m not doing all I can to bring them into my everyday life.
I know that sounds elusive, so here’s an example: one thing that’s been on my heart was friends. As my life simplified and there were less things, I also noticed there were less people. I appreciated and blessed the simplicity, but was sad that it took me on a different path from many friends who went different ways. After more prayer and contemplation, I realized that there are still plenty of people around me right now, and my focus should be on improving my relationships with whose still here instead of praying for new people to come. My problem was me: I let the introvert win too often. If I really want to “connect” with people, then I have to break out of my shell every now and then, and quit closing myself off behind my laptop and Kindle all the time. I already had what I was praying for; I just wasn’t doing what I needed to do to bring it out. It didn’t take much, either: a conversation, a helping hand, a thoughtful gesture, a short visit, a social media post or card sent, and it’s made all the difference. All I had to do was show up and show interest every now and then. Last year, we weren’t invited to any holiday parties. This year, we’ve been to several and are having to turn down invitations. Small things do matter.
So often, we’re told that we need to focus on long term. That’s important, but it’s equally important that we don’t lose sight of what’s in front of us. I learned many years ago that life can change in an instant. Today’s blessings could be gone tomorrow, so it’s important to take a look around to make sure that the thing you’re striving for isn’t already there. Sometimes, we get in our own way and make things harder than they have to be. There’s no need for that. You have the life you’ve got for a reason. Are you making the best of what’s in front of you, or wishing away every blessing that lies at your feet right now?
That’s all today. Take care. Have a Happy Friday tomorrow and a wonderful weekend.