“She was staring out the window of that SUV,
Complainin’ saying ‘I cant wait to turn 18’
She said “I’ll make my own money, and I’ll make my own rules”
Mama put the car in park our there in front of the school
Then she kissed her head and said ‘I was just like you’
You’re gonna miss this
You’re gonna want this back
You’re gonna wish these days hadn’t gone by so fast
These are some good times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now
But you’re gonna miss this.”
This is the first verse and chorus from the song by Trace Adkins. The song goes on to describe a young woman walking through life constantly planning for the next step. Each step of her journey she found no satisfaction. She wanted more. The life she had was not enough.
If I’m honest I can probably recognise myself in the song. Perhaps not all the time, but certainly at points in life I have seen some as mere steppingstones to something that I believed at the time to be better and more fulfilling.
Looking back it becomes clear that the thing I was so confident would make things better really didn’t. Different yes – but rarely better. Each new thing holds its own challenges, new hurdles to overcome.
I am reminded of the rich young fool that Jesus talks about in Luke 12. He got to the point that he was unable to store what he had and pulled down his barns to build bigger and better ones. He was sure that in storing all that he had securely would make life easier, he could sit back, relax and ‘make merry.’ That decision was the last one that he took, as God called time on his plans.
Please be clear, I am not suggesting we don’t do things that will improve our situation. I don’t think if the rich man had simply built a bigger barn, and continued to work, providing for his family and society he would have found himself face to face with God to give an account of himself. It’s not taking the step that causes problems, its whether we are truly satisfied with what the hand that we have been given at any point. Are we willing to be content? To wait? To worship during the pain and longing?
I’ve come to realise in the past few years that not living with contentment in the situation robs me of peace. Wishing that things were different hasn’t changed the fact that I am no longer able to spend time with mum and dad. Although I enjoyed a good relationship with them, there was often something that prevented spending as much time as I now wish I had spent with them. Had I not been trying so hard to satisfy so many different people and desires, perhaps I would have had time for those that I now can’t share time with.
I suppose what I’m saying is that it is really important to live for today.
Remember the past (I’ve written about that before – check www.slavenolonger.co.uk , “create the future, don’t guard the past ”for more) but don’t live there.
Plan for tomorrow. Dream big for the future – God has plans for you there that far exceed yours.
But please, please please live in today. Enjoy those you love. Make time for them. Take lots of pictures. There will come a time when you wish that the last one you have was more up to date.