“It’s always the simple things that change our lives. And these things never happen when we are looking for them to happen. Life will reveal answers at the pace life wishes to do so. You feel like running, but life is on a stroll. This is how God does things.” ~Don Miller, Blue Like Jazz
“You feel like running, but life is on a stroll.”
I’ve found that to be so true in my life. I want to do great and mighty things. I want to enjoy life to it’s fullest. You know, all those “American Dreams.” The pursuit of happiness.
In many ways I’ve lived the American Dream. I have a husband who loves me, three children who bless me, a home with two cats in the yard, and yet, I’ve not “grasped” the happiness I’ve sought. Why is that? What is so difficult in life that the blessings of life are not “enough” to satisfy?
Solomon asked the same question (Ecclesiastes). He had everything the earth could offer, blessings poured out on him from above and yet, in his old age, he walked away from God. His heart went after other gods (1Kings 11).
A wandering heart…
We strive trying to “fill-up” the emptiness of life.
We strive for things, for relationships, for relief,
for something beyond the pain we feel.
I believe I’m learning — and it’s not been an easy lesson, at all — that the happiness we pursue will not be found on this earth. I am very grateful that I live in a country which allows me the freedom to pursue it, but I now believe happiness is fleeting at best.
When my grandmother was in her eighties she came to visit one day. She lived on the other side of Dallas and Grandpa had come to help till the garden for vegetables. It was the first time I had a yard big enough for a proper vegetable garden. With two little boys, I felt it a wonderful summer pastime to work and play in the garden and then to enjoy the fruits of our labor at mealtime.
My grandparents were the best examples of living simply. Grandpa was a preacher and later an evangelist. They never had much in worldly goods. But they lived well. They lived clean and ate healthy. Food from their own garden. The freshness and flavor of Grandpa’s garden could not be surpassed. And the meals my grandmother cooked…WOW!
But, back to the story, Grandmother had come along to visit while Grandpa worked in the sweltering Texas heat to prepare my garden for planting. I was concerned about Grandpa out there working so hard, but Grandmother told me not to worry, “If he doesn’t do it today, it’ll just be hotter tomorrow. He’s fine. He’ll pace himself and rest in the shade when he needs to.”
I began lamenting about the difficulties of working. Seems laundry to fold, meals to make, dishes to clean and bathrooms to scour would never end. And here I was adding a garden to all the work! Grandmother just laughed. “Oh Michelle, I’m eighty years old and if I’ve learned anything it’s that life stays the same. You’ll always have laundry to do. We just keep doing the same tasks over and over again. That’s life. Love God, Michelle, and learn to enjoy it.”
Life’s on a stroll.
We may feel like running, but God gave us one day at a time.
And in His wisdom, He gave us work to do.
Live one day at a time;
Enjoy one moment at a time;
Accept hardship as the pathway to peace;
And take, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is,
Not as you would have it.