Driving on Costa Rica’s narrow roads. Like sardines, packed in a fifteen-seat tour bus. With my best friend, mother, aunt, four cousins, Abuelita, and six siblings. We were beach-bound. For the duration of this two hour journey, there was an unmistakable, echoing chorus of “Are we there yet?”.
I’ve often heard myself chiming in, asking my seemingly “slow-moving” life the same question. As if knowing how much more there is to go will make the delay go by faster. I’ll openly admit that patience hasn’t ever really been my forte. Those who know me well can attest to this. Somehow, I always manage to think up a million other ways I’d rather spend my time. I believe this is called impatience. Yes, for me, waiting without discontentment is typically a fight.
Anxious to reach the next level. Always anticipating a new season. As if I’m always in between seasons. Not really living here, yet not quite there either. So obsessed with God’s ultimate plan for life that I forget about His plan for today. Overlooking the daily mundane things that could be viewed as potential opportunities to live for Him while showing His glory, power, and love. I ignorantly turn what should be adventure into routine. I mistakenly look at today as the obstacle keeping me from tomorrow.
Sometimes, I catch myself pretending I’ve arrived. Daydreaming; not embracing today for what it is and everything it has to offer. It seems that the more I think I know about the future, the more I want it to happen today. Whether its practical, needed, or simply wishful thinking. I’m sure everyone has a different dream. It could be as simple as the weekend, or as complex as your wedding day. But God doesn’t give us a fast-lane. He desires for us to embrace the journey. Anyone can be passionate about a dream to be obtained, or excited about earning the prize. The getting there, is a different story. This is more difficult.
My vision of the goal at times will complicate the necessary journey in order to obtain it. My impatience trips me up. We all love payday. It’s the actual work leading up to it that seems the be the problem. Through my failed attempts to speed up the process in a frantic search for a magic fast forward button; I’ve learned there is no way to get around the necessity of patience. I’ve learned that understanding what God is doing where you are is more important than telling God what you want to do for Him.
He is patient. I believe Jesus exemplified patience while He was here on earth. Being the son of God, he could have simply snapped his fingers, appeared as a grown man, done his duty and ascended. But even He took the time to grow up. His whole life leading up to the very act that would change the whole world. He didn’t cut any corners. He enjoyed every day, living life to its fullest. He understood the importance of one day, one hour, one minute, one moment. He didn’t hit the fast forward button. Basically, thank God I’m not Him, because I couldn’t have done it.
I suppose that is why patience is a fruit of the spirit. Because there is no way on earth patience is a fruit of the flesh. I don’t find any part of me screaming “yay, I get to wait!” At least not without sarcasm. I need help in order to be patient. I can’t do it alone. Thank God He has made provision. In Him, He empowers me to be still and know that He is at work in my life. In every moment, He is there. He doesn’t desire for me to simply get through my life. Making lists and checking them off; living from one exciting event to the next.
Despite my pretending I do; He doesn’t let me know it all. He wants life to be an adventure, full of unanticipated surprises. Who wants a predictable life anyway? So don’t skip out on today, live it out.