Tonight I was at the beach with my small group and it was beautiful. After years of running away from it as fast and hard as I could, I’ve finally embraced community and I am so much better for it.
Something during the night switched, though.
It happened when things began to wind down – you know, when people start packing up, the sun starts to set, and it’s time to walk back to your car?
Because I’m not from around here (a.k.a. Missionary Kid Problems) I was unfamiliar with the territory and had parked clear on the other side of the beach from where we’d all been hanging out. And so around 10pm I began the long trek back to my car alone.
This is when the feelings began rushing in.
Call them “The Blues” “Depression” or whatever you would like; I’m sure you know what I’m talking about – when everything turns dark blue and hazy and you hurt, and sometimes you don’t even know why you hurt, but you do.
I wandered along the path with my sunglasses on, not to block the light as there was only a hint of sunlight left, but because I didn’t want to see what was around me, or maybe I didn’t want to be seen. Or possibly both.
But then something happened: I spotted a heron (egret? stork? I’m not a bird guru…) – slowly making his way through the water. Step-by-step, likely about to enjoy a tasty sushi meal. And that’s when I heard the words, or “felt” I suppose would be more accurate.
Maybe it was God, or maybe an epiphany, or maybe just instinct (or perhaps these are all the same thing):
“Life is so much bigger than this one moment.”
A lot has been going on the past few months – there is so much I want to write about, to tell you about, but I am just not ready yet. Part of the reason is I feel right now it is better for me to process first and write later – rather than the other way around.
But I will say this: the recent weeks have been difficult. This is not to say I’m in a “bad place” – in a lot of ways the trials in the last few months have helped me grow to be in a place better than I could ever have imagined – there is just a lot left over to process and feel.
And sometimes it all is just completely overwhelming and almost too much to bear – especially when it come rushing in unexpected as it did tonight.
That is when these words become so necessary: Life is so much bigger than this one moment.
I don’t know where you are at right now or what you are going through. I don’t know if you are reading this from a dark place, or if right now this moment is a bright one. But I do know this: pain will come. Hurt will come. And there are going to be times when your feelings begin to overwhelm you. This is not a bad thing; this is just life.
And so I hope when this happens, you will think of these words. Remember them, because we live life in moments. Life is made up of many moments all linked together to make a story, your story. And so here, right now, this moment, is just a part of your story. There is so much more to it than what you are going through right now.
This too shall pass.
And it is not everything. And it is not forever.