It’s my final year at ORU, my fifth year of college, and this victory lap has already been a blast. My temptation is to run this lap full speed, ignoring the burning in my lungs, the weird pain in my side. Is that normal? Sorry, I just had my field test so the nightmare is fresh in my mind, but the analogy still stands. I want to blow through it full speed, not because I want it to be over, but because I’m so excited for every possibility presented in these short 10 months.
And maybe it’s the feeling of never getting to do this year again, never again living with my awesome roommate in my soggy Susie dorm room, never again scream singing in a full car on the way to Target for things I really don’t need, never again experiencing this super senior year. I’m making myself sad and a little anxious — I want to hug all my friends, high-five all my professors, run around Lake Evelyn, park in Lower Lot without a pass for a few minutes just for the thrill of it.
But these bursting emotions that I’m not exactly sure how to process also remind me of the importance of slowing down––the significance of sipping it all in, rather than gulping, and savoring every moment. That’s difficult for me, a natural bulldozer covered in air horns and an outrageous number of sparkles.
And yet, God whispers to consider the lilies in their quiet white and pretty stillness. He whispers, pull the bulldozer over, quiet the horns and watch the wind pass through the rolling fields of wheat or grass or cows or whatever is on the side of the road. The pause itself is more important than the view
Many friends my age have begun their adult lives, on their way in masters’ programs, married and settling down, excited to start the next chapter of getting older in all its new challenges. Some are already missing school, wondering why their daily jobs have quickly become such a grind, frantically searching for something else to look forward to, wondering why adult life is often so mundane and monotonous.
I’m noticing as I grow older, in my limited 22-year-old wisdom, that purpose and feeling fulfilled is a daily motivation of which I must consciously remind myself. Find your philosophical guiding, find your Jesus moment and remind yourself of it daily. Preach that Gospel to yourself.
Because whether I speed up or slow down, my whatever-I’m-chasing doesn’t change. Christ is still there. My goal is still there, on the horizon, ready for me whether I run at full speed or whether I slow down and admire the lilies. So I think I’ll take it day by day, pick a few lilies, run when I’m excited to run and practice listening to that still whisper, gently reminding me that time is not my own, and I can’t run out of what I do not have.