The moving finger writes and, having writ, moves on. Nor all thy piety nor wit shall lure it back to cancel half a line, nor all they tears wash out a word of it.
- The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
As I look back over my life so far, a big thing I notice is that it is not one long, continuous story. Yours isn't either, is it? There are definite phases, periods of time where there were specific things God wanted to do for or through me in very specific ways. Some transitions were easy to see (like graduations) and others I can only tell looking back. And really the breaks are often muddy. But a few that seem obvious looking back:
- My decision to follow Jesus in 7th grade,
- High school graduation,
- College graduation,
- Beginning my first job as a teacher,
- Beginning my career at Alfa,
- My sister's accident in 1996,
- My mom's passing...
And so on. In addition, there are friends that move in and out of your life, and others that last and last through all seasons. I have a friend who has pointed out to me that this part of God's perfect design - some he wants to use during a season of your life and others become like family for life.
Am I rambling yet? Let me stop. Here's where this is all coming from: big changes seem to be happening for people who are close to me. I have a niece graduating from college and others who will have to adjust to the fact that she has graduated. My good friend (practically a brother) had a daughter move off to college out of town this fall. Two pairs of friends both had a third child within the last few weeks - causing child raising to shift from man-to-man to zone.
And on it goes.
Here are two things I want to say if any of these friends and family happen to read this:
- The end of a phase may seem sad, but I have found each phase to be better than the one before it. Yes, it is painful to leave people and things behind...incredibly so. At those times, it is probably true that things won't ever be the same again. But I would not trade my life for anything. Why? Because God has used every one of those experiences to draw me closer to him and help me see my purpose in life. There is no point in regret. No matter how I got here, I am more excited about the future than I have ever been!
- Those phases move awfully fast. Treasure each one of them...each day, each hour, each minute. The Bible is right when it tells us that our life is like a vapor. Trust me on this, my younger friends and family, it only moves faster. Don't wish you life away...live it!
Here's how Five for Fighting said it:
I'm blessed to know all of you. I look forward to the rest of the journey. Every phase.