The other day I was scrolling mindlessly through Facebook when something poked at my brain. I saw a picture that said something to the effect of “one day you’ll wake up next to the love of your life in your dream house with a puppy and children and everything happening now will all be worth it.”
It got me thinking about how we are chronically living for the next thing, always working toward this big proverbial “It,” imagining this certain day to circle on an imaginary calendar when we will wake up, full and joyous, and suddenly be rid of all inconvenience, suddenly have this awareness that we have made it to “It.”
The gospel last Sunday hit unabashedly on this trend of busyness and the proverbial “It” that plagues our society. It asks whether a single moment can be added to your life by worrying. Our bodies are intricately working to create our now, to create each present moment. Worry throws those efforts into unrest. We become stressed, tired, inattentive to the people, places, and blessings that fill the moments of the day, feeling empty and defeated. But we can “learn from the way wildflowers grow. They do not toil or spin.” (Mt 6:24-35) We can’t simply wait for the tree God planted to grow tall enough before building a nest, waiting until its tall enough to see the view, measure success by how far away we are from the ground. In all the time it takes the tree to grow that high, a million life changing experiences could have happened in the moments gone unnoticed.
“Do not worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will take care of itself.”
My short experience with studying the human body has given me a humbling reminder. Our bodies are intricately working to exist in the present moment, it’s the only way it knows how. Beating, united, focused on the sole purpose of life, the only thing that makes this home we’ve been given extraordinary. Cells, nerves, ideas, limbs, emotions. They all work to create now. They do not beat, pump, breathe for tomorrow until tomorrow. If our bodies function for the destination of “It” we are lifeless, paralyzed in hope for a future that may not ever be, crippled by worries and doubts that fill our lungs and poison our blood. If our bodies function for the journey of “It” then we are fully alive. If our “It” becomes heaven, then “It” becomes now, and every step of the journey there can be full and joyous. There is only life in a destination that was always about the journey.
“Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your lifespan?”