My church has added a new monthly service geared at millennials. The purpose of the service is to simply bring back those that may have strayed away from regularly attending church, like myself, with an engaging service. After attending the first service, which was amazing, I wanted to share the topic of that night, “Enjoy the ride.”
That night that I went to church I walked in for the first time without any anxiety. Why would I have anxiety going in to church? Well, I was afraid of interacting with people since I had not been there in a while. I was christened and baptized in my church so everyone pretty much knows who I am. It’s different now that a lot of the older members that were there when I was younger have passed on and now there’s new members. While it’s great to have new members, I find myself lost in between those that have been in the church for a while and feel entitled versus those new members trying to find their way.
The topic, “Enjoy the ride,” really spoke to me as the pastor discussed how we can never fully enjoy life because we’re always asking, “Are we there yet?” We have to learn to stop making the journey difficult, sit back, and take it all in. He provided the example that a lot of my friends in church could relate to, going off to college.
When we’re in high school we’re involved in a lot of things. I know when I was in high school I had to take a step back from a lot of activities in church because I had to focus on school. I went from being a part of everything from the dance ministry to the choir, plus more, to semi-disappearing to focus on my education. Still through all of that it was the constant push to figure out what’s next. What’s next after high school. What are you majoring in? What’s after college? What’s your career path? When are you getting married? What about kids? It’s always a question of what’s next and in having to always have a solution, we can never enjoy the moment.
I look back at college and it was a blur. It went by so fast. I have memories, of course, but it was always one thing after the other. Are my assignments done? Am I graduating on time? What about an internship? What about my capstone? There was never a time to just relax and take it in. There was the destination after destination; end goal after end goal. Ultimately, there was always the constant pressure from yourself and others. Looking back a lot of the pressure on myself came from not wanting to disappoint or be judged by others for what I have/haven’t accomplished.
While sitting in the sanctuary, I know that everyone could relate. The pastor shared 5 steps to taking control and getting a handle on this never ending roller coaster.
- Relax your mind.
- Problems are apart of the process.
- Embrace the boundaries.
- Know the real destination.
- Remember that the goal is worth the journey.
While it can be hard to not think of the ultimate destination, it’s about the process that you’re taking to get there. We live in a society where destinations mark success. “Relax your mind as you climb.” Don’t think about every little thing that can go wrong in the end. Handle the moment. Handle what’s in front of you.
You’re going to run into problems and that goes to show that life is full of imperfections. Problems are really a part of the process in order to grow. You’ll find a way to get through it.
For example, there was one time I freaked out when I had a video to edit. The professor had been teaching us how to edit on the Macbook Pro, I didn’t have one, and the assignment was due in less than a week. I gathered my footage, but I felt so defeated in executing what I needed to get done. I knew I couldn’t get it done on campus, there was just too much to do and not enough time. After a good cry on my grandma’s shoulder, I picked myself and started thinking. My friend had a Macbook Pro, I could use the Final Cut Pro trial, edit, export, and there’s my project. Thankfully I have an amazing friend that let me do just that and not only did I finish, my professors told me I had the best video in the class. That experience shows just how problems arise unexpectedly. Some we won’t be able to control. What we have to do as individuals is turn those lemons into lemonade, as cliche as it may sound. Make what you ave work for you.
Embracing the boundaries is learning that not everything is for you. There’s going to be a lot of things that we strive for and we may feel down when they don’t come into fruition. I believe in my heart that everything that I have gone through and will go through is for a reason. Call it not living with regrets or whatever. What’s meant to be will be and not everything you want will happen. Embrace that it wasn’t meant for you and trust that your opportunity will come.
It may sound crazy, but the real destination is not a particular place. The real destination is who you are during the process. It’s who you’re becoming. In the end, remember that the goal is worth the journey. Everything that you go through will all be worth it in the end. The process of it all makes you who you are.