When you’re going through a rough patch, “enjoy the process,” are not the words you want to hear. None-the-less, a wise old man once told me that. He was really talking about life in general. The older I get the more I know that to be true. If it weren’t for being out of shape and busting myself to get in shape, I wouldn’t be able to appreciate what it took to get there. If it weren’t for having an excruciating/near death child birth experience, I would not have the perspective I have about how precious life is. If it weren’t for my trips to the beach, I would not understand how incredible it feels to have my toes in the sand. If it weren’t for helping carry burdens of others with eating disorders, addiction, tragic death, anxiety, depression, abuse, abortion, and chronic pain, I wouldn’t realize how very blessed I am.
How do I enjoy the process when I can’t see the way out, you ask? How do I enjoy the process during the bad times? That has taken me a while to figure out. And I’m still a novice, but I’ll share the wisdom I have gained up to this point with the hope of growth and encouragement. It all begins with trust and faith.
When we let our minds get away from us, we can conjure up all kinds of madness. But when we live in the moment (whatever it may be), feeling the pleasure, pain, hunger, fullness, soreness, or comfort, we can focus on just that moment in time and not live in the past or the future. During the process of life, if we let it, we grow and learn and become wise. We learn not to drive too fast or we’ll get a ticket. We learn that giving love is one of the most fulfilling things there is. We learn how painful death is. We become so grateful when the life saving surgery is over and we can heal. We thank God that the car accident didn’t kill us. All of it is “the process”. The day by day, moment by moment, process. The choice to grow or stay stuck. The choice to forgive or become bitter. The choice to love or hate. The choice to be self-controlled or say something hurtful. The choice to trust God’s plan or not. We can spend all kinds of energy planning things, trying to control a situation, manipulating someone’s life, or questioning, but in the end, God’s plan wins. Every time. If you’ve lived long enough, you know this. You know that the doors He means to open will and the doors He closes are impenetrable. And you wouldn’t want it any other way.
Enjoy the process my friends…enjoy the pain and pleasure. Enjoy the friendships and the conflict. Enjoy the view along the way. Oh, and share the wisdom Christ has given you so someone else might “enjoy the process” too.
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Psalm 16:11