I remember the early trips with my grandma. I’d get behind the wheel, eager to go somewhere with my grandma, who I adored.
But then she’d say, “Holly, you drive like you’re in a hurry.”
“But Grandma,” I’d protest, “I’m not even speeding.”
She’d shake her head and respond, “you’re missing the point.” And my teenage or 20-something self would let out an exasperated sigh. She was right. I didn’t know what her point was. At least not in those moments. I’d just tighten my hands on the wheel and get us to our destination.
I don’t remember the exact moment that I finally understood what she meant. Maybe it was after dozens of trips with her. Maybe it was after watching how she lived. Maybe it just took some growing up and hard experiences. But I finally understood that I was living life in a hurry. Always focusing on the next destination and missing the beauty of the current journey.
It’s easy to do, isn’t it?
Graduating from school.
Our first real job.
Our next vacation.
Seeing the kids off to school, college, etc.
There are so many destinations in life that we look ahead to with anticipation and longing. And they aren’t necessarily bad things. In fact, it’s often good and exciting destinations that are on the horizon. But as we look ahead to those things, are we missing today?
Are we missing the u-turns?
The random conversations.
The looking up and really seeing people.
I’ve been guilty of that many times. And I think that’s what my Grandma was saying to me. What she wanted me to learn. That there is beauty in the journey, not just the destination. And there are people to see.
There’s a guy in his 80s in a tulip garden who just got his first smartphone and needs help understanding its camera settings.
There’s a lady in the gas station who needs to be seen and have someone say “hey, how’s your day going?”
There’s a guy at the laundromat whose life is crumbling and he just needs someone to listen.
There’s a girl at Starbucks on the verge of tears who needs an encouraging word, even from a stranger.
There are people along the way who need you to see them. To pause a moment. To listen without rushing. To sit in the journey with them.
These days I often set my gps to avoid highways. Not because it’s wrong to travel the highway – there’s a time and place for that. But I set out on slower roads as a tangible reminder to not live in a hurry. To set my mind to seeing who or what God places in my path. To pay attention to what He’s speaking in my heart. To look for the ones who need to be seen.
Dear friends, let me encourage you today to not live in a hurry. Take a deep breath. You will get to the destination. But the journey may the real treasure that God has for you.