Embracing the Middle

Just as each year has 4 seasons, our lives have their own seasons.  There's just a few major differences; we don't know when they're changing, and we don't know what the next season will look like.  Having predictable seasons can be great. You can prepare for them in different ways; mentally, physically, and stock up on the right necessities.  The expectation is clear.  The timing is just right.  I mean we have a set date of when the season will change.  If it doesn't change on time, something is 'off'.  We are conditioned to feel cold during the end of the year, and then warm up in the beginning and middle.  It's clockwork.  

 

Now let's talk about life.  No notice, no date, no expectations for the next season.  We go through life trying to hit what we think is the next season.  So here's the breakdown - graduate high college, great career, get married, buy a house, travel, have kids and then pass on everything you've learned to the next generation.  Sound about right?  Well if that's what's supposed to happen, what about the middle?  The in-betweens?  Here's the best part, what if that script is not even what we need to follow? 

 

I hate the middle.  I hate waiting for the next season.  But, I am learning that the middle is the best part.  If you choose to embrace it.  I have literally 0 patience for the next season, that I forget to enjoy the middle.  There is so much learning, and growth that is happening, but it can be easily missed.  What if the middle is what actually tells us what's next?  I am learning that most of the time we will not know what the next season is, but the middle is where we prepare for it.  I have expectations for what the next season will be, but every time God shows me something different.  The crazy part is, it's always better than what I imagined.  

For the first time in my life I have 0 expectations.  I am living in the middle and embracing my now.  The next season will come when it comes.  For now, I am learning, I am growing.  No reason to ignore my present, to hope for a future that isn't even here yet.  It's so cliche, but don't forget about your now.  What is it that God wants to teach you today?  He speaks in a whisper, and it's never obvious.  When you're waiting in line for your coffee, is there someone you're supposed to tell that God loves them.  When you're on the bus, is someone going through a hard time and they just need someone to listen?  When you're sitting in church, does someone just need a hug?  You know that nudge or that tiny thought that comes to your head that says, "You should give all of your change to the homeless man outside"?  Yea, that voice isn't just a random thought.  That voice belongs to someone pretty important and if we listen closely to that voice, it can reveal a lot about ourselves.  Take the time to listen to that voice while you're on your way to work or that quiet moment just before it's time to get out of bed.  You'll be amazed at what He is saying to you. 

 

For now I'll leave you with a quote from the infamous make-you-cry show, This Is Us;

You think that you’re at the beginning of your journey, but you also began a long time ago,” Life has a middle, too, and middles can be hardest because that’s when you can get really lost. But middles can be a beginning sometimes . . . You know, I had thought my journey had come to an end, but I don’t know. I don’t know; maybe we’re both at our next beginning.
— This Is Us - Season 2, Episode 6

 

What is your now?  What is He saying to you?