“Wait! What? How’d I get here?”
My daughter Courtney was describing the facial expressions of her son Beck as he rolled over for the first time. A tad bit traumatized by the change of scenery from front to back, he was clueless as to what had happened.
His folks were tickled with a new “first”. It’s how we measure progress in children. First smiles. Begin to crawl. Eat people food. Take their first steps.
I hate missing all this.
There are about 1,840 miles that separate us, so dropping by for a visit isn’t logistically feasible. To make it work would take a lot of planning and making sure it would work for our Denver family–details that can overwhelm. Life gets busy. There are responsibilities that must be completed.
I hate missing out on his progress.
We have grands in Washington, DC and Mifflinburg, PA as well as Orlando. I missed Sloane learning to ice skate. And watching Huck and Landry experience their first fondue. Small but significant things. It’s easier to make time to see the kids who are local, but even then we miss out on so many things. When I’m with them, I’m amazed at how much they’ve grown and matured.
I hate missing out on the small steps forward.
It’s easy for me to get focused on what’s in front of me and lose sight of what’s a little further away. It’s not intentional; it’s the challenge of constantly assessing value in the things that can and do fill my life.
So what am I missing?
People matter more than anything else. I need to constantly be reminded that the faces in my life are the things that impact me the most.
Those faces reflect my real passion.
I walked into a restaurant the other day, waiting for a friend. Three young gals in their early twenties sat together at a table. All of them on their phones. Texting someone who wasn’t there. No conversation. No interaction.
It made me wonder if they knew who actually was present with them.
It’s easy to hold people at arm’s length if I don’t want them to see all of me. Don’t encourage them to get below the surface of commonplace pleasantries and banal conversation. Ask questions; don’t give them the chance to respond with their own.
Does that ever satisfy my need for relationship?
I was good at holding God at arm’s length for a while. As I began a relationship with Him I was uncomfortable with many of my behaviors and attitudes. I thought I could keep some of my junk hidden, not so obvious. Be a little bit more of what I thought God expected me to be.
I can’t hide anything from God. He knows it all–and still loves me as I am. I can’t offend Him, shock Him, scare Him off. He’s committed to this relationship with me.
And longs for me to be that committed to Him.
I don’t ever want to put distance between me and those I love. Why would I ever do that with God?
That puts “missing out” at a whole new level.