I sat on the bathroom floor, looking into the pearly white toilet I’d just scrubbed clean. I folded the towels and made up the bed in my grandmother’s guest house where I’m helping out. How am I here again? This isn’t part of the life plan; I’m in my 30’s and starting over. Tears wanted to flow but something stopped them. What? Purpose. You see, I don’t measure my life based on where I’m at right now but on where I’m going.
Transition is a necessary part of every journey. I cannot get to a destination without taking a bus, a car, an airplane, some transitional mode of transport. The more adventurous the journey, the greater the transition required. So it is with life. In every great story we have moments of greatness, moments of hard work, moments of trial and moments of seemingly nothingness. All have their own challenges, but the key is never losing sight of where we are going in the midst of where we are at right now.
“Neither fire nor water is a friendly place to camp” (Lisa Bevere). So often in times of trial, disappointment or nothingness, the dreams we are holding become too heavy to bear. The hope of a relationship when the dating pool is as dry as a bone, the hope of owning a home when making rent is a struggle, the hope of the career you’ve longed for when you can’t even get hired in the local shop. The existence of the dream sharpens the pain of our current reality so we simply let it go.
Twelve spies were sent into Canaan, the land God promised to give the Israelites. Ten came back and gave a report that said we cannot conquer this land, it’s too great a challenge for us. Two came back and said God has given us this land, let’s advance (Numbers 13). Only the two spies who believed the promise, despite what they saw, entered Canaan and received their inheritance. Despite forty years of wandering they never lost sight of where they were going.
I am gleaning everything I can from this season of transition. There are life lessons that only the toilet bowl and folded towel can teach me. I receive them with gratitude because when you know where you’re going, you suddenly begin to appreciate the beauty of where you are at.
You stop chasing the “next thing” in a mad rush to reach an ever elusive somewhere. Your dreams transform from weighty luggage to inspirational fuel that propels you onwards. You live with an awareness of purpose in every season, holding hope for your dreams and living with expectation.
I would rather face disappointment than stop dreaming big. I am made for purpose. So are you.
Ask yourself today, regardless of what you see around you, where am I going?
By Lisa Clarke