There are times when life seems to rush right by, leaving us overwhelmed and caught in eddies of emotion and confusion. Other times it seems to just meander and wind its way on and all there is to do is watch the tiny ripples on the water as you float along with it. Then there are those times when life seems to stop on a dime and you are left encapsulated in a moment of awe and wonder, or despair and grief. You stand there – jaw dropped and eyes wide, or chin quivering and eyes shut up tight – waiting for the moment to end or longing for it to go on forever. I think these moments are the best moments of our lives.
I’ve found that it usually takes something or someone from outside of the space you’re experiencing to bring you back to reality. It can be a pat on the back or an embrace from someone near or maybe a little more obscure like the changing of a song on the radio or a pebble stuck in your shoe. Whatever the case, something from ‘out there’ invades your moment and it is gone. Our wedding was just such a moment for my wife and I and that first kiss lead to cheers from those around us drawing us back. Holding each my kids for the first time also stopped time for me as I walked them down to the hospital hallway in my arms. Each time it was the nurse in front of me turning around and taking my newborn daughter and son. When my dad died, this frozen moment lasted for a few weeks before I heard a teacher in school talking to another teacher about how this 12 year old was dealing with his dad’s death. I wasn’t ‘feeling well’ so the school nurse had called my mom to come and pick me up and I was waiting in the library just staring out the window.
I like these moments, even the painful ones, because these are the ones that change our lives. Or, more precisely, they are the ones that the Good Lord can use most effectively to mold us and shape us. They are the times when He finally gets us to be still long enough to create a new thread or strand in our hearts and tie it into the tapestry he has for our lives. They are what make us who we are in Him. These moments, if we allow the Good Lord to do his work, have the potential to teach us and take closer the heart of God than we can ever come when floating on the lazy river watching the world pass us by.