One of the most powerful destroyers of peace and joy is “living anywhere but here”. It also prevents you from fully Embracing Life. Men and women have been faced with this throughout the ages, but I believe that recent technological advances have made this an exceptionally difficult landmine in this day and age.
So what exactly do I mean by “living anywhere but here”? It primarily manifests itself in three ways:
- Living in the past
- Living in the future
- Living in the virtual
Living in the Past – The good ol’ days
In 1998 and 1999 I spent two of the best summers of my life doing mission work in the inner city. While there I had the privilege of living with some of the most amazing women who came from all corners of the US, Ireland, Mexico and Kenya. I worked along side some of the most holy and awesome guys ever. We served the greatest kids, and worked in (what to me is) one of the most sacred of churches.
God came in power. He transformed lives – all of our lives. It was a great time. And although I will recount with great fondness the times of the past, I will not remain there.
We have all heard of people in their forties whose highlight of their life was high-school. I will admit, I loved high-school. I had the honor of graduating with 14 of the most incredible people (yes, I said 14). We had a lot of fun together, we laughed, learned and served together. I will always look back at that time fondly (go Warriors!) But I cannot remain there.
The key is balance.
Have you ever noticed in the Old Testament how God mandated that they celebrate all sorts of holidays? They were days set aside specifically to remember the great deeds of the Lord.
I believe that God really does love a party! He loves to celebrate! I agree that it is good to remember the things of the past, and thank God for what He did.
- Thank you for what you did inside me.
- Thank you for allowing me to feel your presence in such a deep way.
- Thank you for the lives that were changed.
- Thank you for friendships that were formed.
- Thank you for the wonderful leaders and teachers that you sent.
- Thank you that I learned to be an expert grocery shopper!
- Thank you for the heart you gave me for the poor.
- Thank you for giving me compassion (and not pity) for the lost.
This I will recount, I will give God glory. I will not lose today by over glorifying the past.
I will LIVE here. I will embrace THIS life.
“This is the day the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118: 24 NKJV
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