Now and Not Yet

What God may hereafter require of you, you must not give yourself the least trouble about. Everything He gives you to do, you must do as well as ever you can, and that is the best possible preparation for what He may want you to do next. If people would but do what they have to do, they would always find themselves ready for what came next. 

– George MacDonald

George MacDonald and his epic beard
George MacDonald and his epic beard

If you haven’t read George MacDonald, I would suggest that any attempt to do so include a free afternoon and a dictionary at your side. That should get you through about a page and a half of his work. His sermons are deep and rich with conviction. You can see why his fingerprints film much of C.S. Lewis’s work. He loved Jesus and he was brutally honest about what the cross of our Lord requires of us.

Which is why this quote struck me so. Just last night, I was journaling about how to learn to be content where I am. Whether that’s a physical place or an emotional state. My temperament has a tendency to want more than the present. I don’t want to know what’s going to happen in the whole of my life, but I’m always looking for what’s coming next. (You know, as Pocahontas put it… Just around the river bend. That was terrible. I’m sorry. I just couldn’t resist.)

I constantly live in this tension of now and not yet. I want to do well now. I want to follow through, do my work and my duty with excellence. But the ‘not yet’ nibbles at the corners of my soul just enough to be distracting. To tease and awake desire and longing for something I haven’t yet experienced or known. I don’t know if there will ever be balance to this side of my nature. I don’t know how to tame it. In all honesty, I don’t know that I should.

Do you wrestle with the ‘not yet’ of life? Or do you struggle with change? How do you do well in the ‘now’?

2 thoughts on “Now and Not Yet

  1. I’m going to overlook the Pocahontas song reference…..

    But, yes, totally. I get it. Always have. I’m not a patient person. And most of the time I feel like I’m still waiting for my life to start. Does that make sense? I’m nearly 34.

    Like

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