Let’s set the scene, shall we? We zoom in to a young, ambitious, twenty-something with stars in her eyes and great hope for her future — but slowly, as we zoom out, we see her empty expression and see that she is confined in a small, dark cubicle. Wasting away on spreadsheet after spreadsheet. Desperate for something that gave her life, something that utilized her gifts and creativity. She sat there, day after day, wishing away her current reality and ready to move on to bigger, better things.
Ah yes, the big reveal: that girl was me. And yes, I do know it’s a bit dramatic. I tend to be a bit dramatic.
But that’s what it felt like, 5 days a week, at my “big girl” job (as I called it). I was grateful for it, as it helped provide for me and my husband. And I loved the people I worked with, they were all wonderful and kind. But I just couldn’t shake this nagging hollowness I felt each day in that dark, cold office staring at my computer screen. I longed to go into acting and writing full time. I was anxious and ready for our move to California. I was ready for a change of scenery, ready to escape the office and go on an adventure.
What I wish I could go back and tell my younger self is this: “bloom where you are planted.” Dreaming big is important, it gives us hope and perseverance. But, with that said, I also think it is incredibly important to embrace our current reality. There is much to learn, much to grow from, and so much to pour out — but if we are so consumed with ending one season and rushing on to the next, how can we possibly be open to all God has to show us?
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” -Collossians 3:23-24 [NIV]
“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.” -Matthew 6: 34 [MSG]
Looking back, there were so many opportunities I missed, friendships I missed out on, growth that could’ve happened. That girl, sitting in her cubicle, had already checked out. Mentally and emotionally. She knew she was moving to California to start her new life there. So even though she had a whole year there, at that job, in that community — she was so busy looking ahead that she forgot to be present where she was. She forgot to bloom.
Rather than feeling like we are “waiting” for our life to begin, what if we gave our entire attention and focus to what God is doing in our lives right now? In the present. This day. Not waiting for “some day” when we graduate school, or find a husband, or start a family. Or “someday” when we get our dream job and find success. Or “someday” when our kids start school and we finally have a minute to ourselves (ahem cough). Or next year, next month, next week. Whatever that thing is that you’re waiting for.
Because the truth is: this is it. This is our life. It has already begun.
And it’s a choice that we can make today and everyday— a choice to bloom. To embrace our current season. To suck the marrow out of it and live in the present moment.
What is God teaching us in this season? How can we grow? How can we be more present in the now instead of living for tomorrow? These are the questions I’m asking myself.
“Jesus said, ‘No procrastination. No backward looks. You can’t put God’s kingdom off till tomorrow. Seize the day.’” (Luke 9:62 MSG)
Seize this day, live in the present moment, so that we can truly bloom where ever we are planted. Each season, as dry and barren as one may seem, may actually hold something truly beautiful for us.
Let’s not be so busy looking ahead that we miss it.