Looking back and looking ahead

Looking back and looking ahead

In the 2013 movie “About Time,” the film’s lead, Tim, learns that all of the men in his family have had the ability to travel through time. He uses this ability to serve several purposes including an attempt to get a girlfriend. Tim learns various lessons about how to best use his ability, lessons about life, and lessons about happiness.

Tim eventually takes his father’s advise for the “key to happiness” — live each day just like anyone else, but go back a second time and notice all of the good things that filled his day.

In the end, however, Tim shares a lesson his dad had not learned — he went one step further than his dad. He says, “the truth is I now don’t travel back at all, not even for the day. I just try to live every day as if I’ve deliberately come back to this one day, to enjoy it, as if it was the full final day of my extraordinary, ordinary life.”

We are all particularly reflective this time of year. As midnight of January 1 approaches, we evaluate our year and look to what we hope the next year might hold for us. We don’t have the gift of time travel to change our day-to-day circumstances, or even have a second chance at noticing the joys and gifts of each day we are otherwise too distracted to notice. We can’t know what the next 365 days will hold for us, but we can try to live intentionally with each new day.

So my prayer for myself (and for us all) this year is that I may be more intentional with all the gifts God has given me, with each day, and with each moment. The year may not play out like I hope it will, but I pray that I will be intentional in noticing the numerous ways God answers prayers and shows his faithfulness in all things.


Dear future me…

Dear future me…

I did a little spring cleaning recently. That kind of cleaning where you pull everything out and purge. The kind of cleaning where it gets worse before it gets better.

Well, in the process of cleaning, I came across some old notes and journals. My journals usually end up being an eclectic collection of notes from church sermons, events, rants on frustrating days, quotes, and just general thoughts written down.

I came across a specific entry where I was writing about that day and how bad it was. I kind of laughed to myself because now that I’m more than a year a way from that day, the problem of that day was really insignificant and something I was able to recover from. As I went on, I saw the ups and downs of life; funny stories and good memories. I found myself laughing at the immaturity in my thoughts about things.

It’s fun to look back at old notes and look at how much I’ve grown and changed and what all God has brought be through. I have to constantly remind myself of God’s sovereignty in all things and that He is constant and good.

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.Are you not of more value than they?”
– Matthew 6:25-26 (ESV)

This is such a wonderful piece of scripture and reminder of God’s faithfulness and love for us.