At two years old, the idea of waiting for anything is about as alien a concept as drinking hot coffee through a straw. I think we never grow out of it, we learn to be mature about our waiting, but inside we are still not happy about it.
At nearly fifty years old I believe I am becoming accustomed to waiting, however, I also believe I have wasted a lot of time. Maybe for some the realization that life happens in the waiting happens at an earlier age than for others, although for most it is part of the process as we mature and not really a thunder bolt moment. I have been reflecting on how many opportunities there are in the waiting that often are squandered, or missed altogether.
When I am in a line waiting to check out anywhere what do I/we do? Look around at others, nowadays, probably play on our phones, count the items of the people in front of us in the 10 items or less check-out, think about what else we have to do or where we have to go or a hundred other things. The funny thing is we are in line with a number of other people who are doing or not doing the same things. I know what we are not doing is taking the opportunity to really live in those countless moments.
I am not against using time for thinking and reflecting and planning, I do it all the time. This is just me wondering out loud, when… am I going to finally get tired of going through the motions of life while missing countless moments to live. When will I get over my fear or intimidation and strike up conversations with others in that line with something more meaningful than vapid complaints about the weather. At what point will my countless prayers about a bounty of things happening around me be followed up with meaningful actions embodied in those prayers? Joe is in the Hospital, Lord please make him well, Lord give the Doctors wisdom in finding a diagnosis… how about stopping for a minute and calling his wife to offer assistance, or him, to offer encouragement, or sending out a good old-fashioned card through snail mail, or stopping for a few minutes on the way home from work at the hospital, or, or, or.
How about I fall back on the old justifications, as if I can validate my excuses, I am too busy, perhaps I will just be in the way, people who are closer will do that, if He is still there tomorrow I will check on him, that’s so and so’s job etc.
Who or what made us so busy that busy becomes the standard for how much empathy and compassion we should have or share? When we are done waiting, we are done living. If I can’t say no to overloading my schedule it isn’t just me I am choosing to affect. If I open up my schedule and still choose not to live intentionally, it will still reap nothing. I think we have plenty of time, I am asleep at the wheel and life is happening to me, but I am certainly not living.
Just some thoughts on this Monday, What are some of yours?