Hubby and I watched The Secret Life of Walter Mitty a few weeks ago. We watched it again the following night. It spoke to us in its simple, yet poignant story line.
One thought that’s stayed with me is this: if I’m tuned out to the real—to the now—because I’m dreaming up a better present, I will miss the gift of today.
I’ll miss the small presents God places along my path. Be it a hug from one of our boys, being offered space to merge into heavy traffic, someone allowing me go before them in the checkout line at the store because I only have a few things…..
If I’m seeking after what I think I want, I‘ll miss the blessings of what I have. Sometimes what we’re looking for is right in front of us. But if we’re searching elsewhere for it; we’ll miss the gift in the now.
If God’s given me this moment, shouldn’t I be seeking to be all in it? All present?
It’s easy to dream of that day when I sign with an agent who loves my writing. That day when a book contract arrives in the mail, with an “X” at the bottom of the page, inviting my signature.
It’s easy to dream of the day when my kids say, “Mom, you were right.” (I know. Don’t laugh too hard).
When I dream too much of what I don’t yet have—may never have—I miss out on the gift of the present. Of God’s presence.
Because really? If I don’t have “it” at this moment, then my Abba, who knows my needs from second to second, knows I don’t need that thing right now. He may gift it to me in the future, but in the now I don’t need it.
He’s given me everything I need for now. Everything necessary to fully live in this moment.
Walter Mitty dreamed of being heroic, of having a bigger life than he currently lived. He zoned out of the present to dream about what he wanted his life to be. But, he missed out on the treasures in his real life, the smiles. The opportunities to connect with others.
In seeking ways to be significant on a large scale, at least in his mind, he denied himself the gifts of his real life. A budding relationship with a nice lady. He missed—totally missed—the fact that a well-known photographer had more respect for him than Walter had for himself.
These are gifts.
When we run pell-mell after what we think we need—what we want—what gifts do we trample in the dirt under our feet?
I’m purposing to be fully present in each moment. It’s hard.
The to-do’s on my daily list, the boys’ bickering because they’ve had too much ”brother bonding time,” the unwritten words for my book pinging in my head—all of these are temptations to zone out of the present.
But if I do—if we do—we miss the glimpses of God’s fingerprints on our days. We miss a deeper connection with those who people our lives. We miss knowing the presence of the Lord walking right beside us.
We miss out on joy. On knowing the pleasure our Father takes in us.
Yes, it’s easy to wish our actual present away, often in pursuit of the lesser. It’s easy to to yearn for something we don’t need in this moment.
Rather than doing this, maybe we can open our hands wide before God each morning. Let Him place His presents for the day in them, closing our fingers over the gifts only He can give.
What about you? What presents has God given you recently? How do you choose to live fully in the moment?