‘Wherever you are be all there.’
I collect quotes- & this is one of my favourites! It was written by a young missionary named Jim Elliot- in the 1950s. It was written before mindfulness was a trendy concept, before digital distractions & social media.
He exhorts us to be fully engaged in the moment wherever we are, whatever we’re doing.
This very moment is where past, present & future intersect! Moments like these weave together to make the fabric of life.
If we aren’t ‘all there’ we can become oblivious to the important things in life as it rolls by. We can miss the daily blessings of the longest days & shortest years.
‘The past is frozen & can no longer flow. The present is lit up with eternal rays’
How can we be ‘all there’?
We need to stay tuned in.
It’s relatively easy to think of examples when we aren’t all there:
*When we check & re-check our smart phones when we’re out for coffee/dinner with friends or family.
Nowadays we are always switched on & never unplugged!
The average smart phone user checks it 186 times a day. I read that checking our phones is as contagious as yawning!
*When we’re not really listening when someone is talking because we’re planning how to interject with our news at the next pause
*When we scroll down Facebook/Twitter/emails while our child talking is talking to us
Chances are, we won’t remember what we were reading but our child may recall later that we weren’t listening & how we made them feel. We need to give undivided attention to our children –especially when they interrupt us
*When we think about week ahead sitting in church rather than focusing our minds on meeting with God.
We need to train ourselves to block these distracting thoughts & listen to what God is trying to say
*When we ‘dual screen’ – eg scroll through e-mails or social media while watching TV.
Just focus on the story line & enjoy the movie. You’ll feel less frazzled!
To be ‘all there’:
*Don’t let the urgent squeeze out the important
*Don’t let the trivial impact the important
*Don’t let digital displace reality
To fully engage in this adventure called life we need to unplug, get off line & ‘out of office’
We need to appreciate the moment & savour the little things. For sometimes little things are actually big things in disguise.
And, you never know the last time you’re going to see a person or place.
‘We have this moment to hold in our hands
and to touch as it slips through our fingers like sand;
Yesterday’s gone and tomorrow may never come,
But we have this moment today.’
(Bill & Gloria Gaither)
Where ever you are :
‘Wherever you are- be all there!’
God has dealt with your past, He’s in control of your future & He’s given this moment as a gift. Now is the present.
‘Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.’
(Matthew 6:34 MSG)
PS Jim Elliot also wrote these powerful words:
‘He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot loose’
He was martyred by Auca Indians in Ecuador in 1956.