Maybe it’s not until middle age that how short life actually is becomes a realization for you. The time, the moments that we have are fleeting. Each moment we are in, however sublime, is a moment that is lost forever except where it lives on in our memories. The children grow up much sooner than expected. Before you know it your life is halfway over and sometimes you might even find yourself in the fourth quarter. And throughout it all time marches forever forward. The lesson therefore isn’t to lament the brevity of this life or to revert your eye in sadness over the past. The idea is to do your best to live every moment of your life. Remember the past good times with fondness and anticipate the future with excited anticipation, but do not forget to live the life you have right now. Indeed, live your life now!
It is so easy, as you settle into life, to fall into various routines and habits that you employ without thinking day by day. There was once a time when you were excited about what the day might bring, but now maybe follow the established patterns of a routine day with nothing too thrilling on the horizon. It seems, in our country anyway, that so many of us are living for the weekend; that grand time when we can freely choose how we might occupy our time. But whatever happened to Monday? What, besides work, did we enjoy for the other 32 hours before the good times were upon us again? It seems we fall into these rote behaviors, absent any thinking, forever prolonging our happiness for some future time when we can truly enjoy ourselves. We fail to enjoy the now. We fail to seek happiness and fulfillment in the moments we are in. We stop being able to see the precious time we occupy right now and instead waste our existence looking back and peering ahead. I am not sure how to describe it, but it is as if we trade the now for the promise of the future. We make, as I read today, “when I” statements in reference to an imaginary future time frame when we can finally be at rest and enjoy the short life we have been given. All of us it seems are waiting for something. We are waiting for something. The new job, our life partner, our future children, our financial success, our ship to finally come in, our new house, retirement, yet all of these things do not exist now while we are waiting for them, they exist later on. So the question that begs is what are we doing with our lives in between these milestones? Where is our subject of focus in this moment we live in now? What happened to us that convinced us to perpetually defer our happiness to the future? Who convinced us that our enjoyment of life was restricted to certain significant events and that the entire rest of the time was to be lived in the doldrums of everyday existence? Indeed, who talked us out of living the life that is right now?
Suddenly it dawns on you that the time to live is now. Your mother is getting older and won’t, if the Lord tarries, be around forever. Your children grow up and though the incredibly fond times of raising them is over, they are still there for you to spend time loving and enjoying. Even your grandchildren refuse to remain little children and soon enough they too become an older version of that little person you loved so much and still need your love today. Yet the sheer routine of life minimizes your visits, talks you out of your interactions and steals away joy you were meant to continue experiencing today. Time marches forward. Your enjoyment of life doesn’t need to become unable to keep pace. Why would we need the thought of losing the people we love so dearly to prompt us into action? The time for giving love and sharing love is now. The same holds true for the things we enjoy in life. Do your favorite hobby as often as you can. Eat the cookie, for God’s sake and stop trying to be the distorted media version of yourself. If you are creative and have ideas, do your ideas now. Pursue your interests now. If you are blessed enough to find something that makes your eyes light up, make your eyes light up as often as you can. The time is short. Life is short. Your opportunity to dig deep into this great life of endless possibility is short. Do now what you will wish you would have done earlier once you are older. Write the book. Start the business. Share of your abundance. Help somebody else. Do it now.
It seems we spend far too much time analyzing life and not enough time living it. We carry this false set of rules forever threatening us with the prospect of too much and slow down. We can’t do such and such on a weeknight. We have to be careful not to have too much fun. It is as if every enjoyment comes with a secret curtailer whose job it is to make sure we don’t have too much pleasure; too much enjoyment. And, while every enjoyment has its limitations, we all seem to succumb to the argument before we even get started. Before you know it, everything you like becomes wrong and to be avoided in favor of the drab, the monotonous, the routine. Who taught us to live this way? You and I have a finite number of breaths on this earth and one day we will find ourselves at the end of it. Why not choose instead to live life now? Why not pursue the things that make us happy today? Why not savor the moments we are in and not take them for granted? Enjoy your job. Enjoy your family. Enjoy your spouse. Enjoy the little things that all add up to the big thing we call life. Live life, your life, now!
It does not matter where you are in your journey. What matters is that you take advantage of every second you have been blessed to live. Enjoy your successes. Enjoy the learning you gained from your failures. Enjoy this whole experience of life, the ups and the downs because every day is a brand new day to live and to discover and to thrive. Make the most of the time you have on this earth and thank God for it. For that is your portion under the sun. Live your life now!
Just some good thoughts…