A Beautiful Place
I look to my left and I see the sun shining on green grass carpeted with orange leaves that mark the end of summer. I look to my right and I see some sun there as well.
I want to go to the left, but I told myself I’d go the right.
“I know what I’ll do,” I tell myself. “I’ll do both. I’ll go this way a little bit and come back.”
I walk to the right awhile and come back to where I stood before. The sun is still shining to the left, but it seems a bit lower. Maybe I can still catch it. But as I go, the sun wanes as it falls lower and lower.
“I’ll come back.” I said.
But when I came back, a quarter hour had passed, and the beauty was gone.
“I can do both.”
How many times do we tell ourselves: “That way is better.” Not that it merely looks better, but we know that it is better.
Maybe it’s beholding the beauty of God in His word, maybe it’s spending time with those we care about. We see a better way, a more beautiful way.
Then there’s another way, something we feel like we should do. Working more, buying more stuff for those we care about, the list goes on.
It doesn’t look as bright, as nice, or as beautiful. But we tell ourselves “I can do both.”
So we walk along and do what we feel like we need to do. We look over our shoulder and the beautiful path is still there, so we press on.
We do what we feel like we need to do and head back. We can still see the glimmer of sunshine on that beautiful place, but when we get there, it’s gone.
We regret going the wrong way. “If I had only gone this way first, I could have seen that beauty. If I had only gone this way first, my needs would have been met.
I would not have as much stuff or as nice, but all that really brought me was more and more work to manage and pay for all that stuff.”
“I missed the point, if I ever really knew it. Is it too late?”
Begin today. It will not be easy, but it will be joyous.
“Is it too late?”
Many people approach life like this. They see a more beautiful path, but they’ll go that way later. I’ll walk with God later. I hear them talk about the joy and beauty they see in God, and I want it, but I’ll do that later.
Someday never comes.
Many die and stand face-to-face with their maker pleading “I really meant to trust in You, I really meant to do it someday. I just never got around to it.”
Even many Christians live life like this. They’re saved, they cannot lose their salvation, but they’re not really interested in getting to know God.
They see their friends talk about how amazing God is but they have a job or dream or desire they want to “do first” before they really seek God. They “don’t have time”.
It’s not till the end of their life they look back in regret and say “If I had only gone on the beautiful path, if I had only gotten to know the God I trust in; I would have seen that I am most myself when I most submitted to His will.”
“I put my dream over getting to know Him, and lost both my dream and knowing my King and my Friend. If I had gone on the beautiful path, my life and dream would look different. They would be far better than what I could ever imagine. I know this because I live it as my life comes quickly to a close.”
“I wish I would have known.”
“I wish I would have known.” No, I wish I would have believed what I knew.
“I wish I would have believed that God would do all He said. I wish I would have trusted that God would provide for my needs and dreams if I sought Him diligently through His word (Heb. 11:6).
Whether He made my dreams come true or replaced them with something new, He would make me love Him anew.
I wish I do not now look back at my life and say ‘My God, how have I wasted this life you’ve given me.'”
Don’t waste your life. Take the beautiful path. Take the path without regrets.
“If we set our expectation on persons, places, or things they will disappear and disappoint; but if we set our expectation on God, He will never disappear or disappoint.”
Please let me know what you think of the story format. The first was an experience I had today, the rest was a hypothetical story made from stories I’ve heard.
Most of the good ideas were not my own, but a melding of others’ ideas. The ending quote was from Russ, a mentor of mine.
Photo by Johannes Plenio on Unsplash
2 thoughts on “A Beautiful Place”
I liked the format; I’ve been reading some work by Joni Eareckson-Tada lately, and this style mimics hers wonderfully!