Friend, find joy in the journey. No, it’s not always easy. But I assure you, it’s always worth it.
Life’s a big, long, crazy journey. It’s full of exciting things, boring things, and hard things. And all of those things shape who we are and who we are becoming.
We set big goals for ourselves: get a nice, shiny degree, a big, fancy job, a beautiful house, a wonderful spouse. Those things are all wonderful.
But if they’re our definition of success and happiness, we’ll never be happy.
If the end of the journey is the pinnacle of happiness, how will we ever find true joy?
That, friends, is what we need to take a step back and look at.
See, if you’re not finding joy in the journey, you won’t have that ultimate joy when you’ve reached the goal.
Something will always seem better, that something not achieved yet.
If we can’t see our lives as God-orchestrated and don’t learn to live with purpose, we’ll wander around our whole lives looking for that next thing to make us happy.
When current life becomes more about “finishing the degree” and less about learning and growing in every situation we’re in, we keep ourselves from reaching our full potential.
When it becomes more about “working our way up the corporate ladder” and less about learning how to help and serve others in any work environment we’re put in, we miss the point.
When life becomes more about “finding the right person” and less about being the right person, and serving where God has placed us, we cripple ourselves from growing as people in the way that God has intended.
When we’re always looking so far ahead and not letting ourselves see the blessing of the here and now, we miss out on so much that God has for us. Somehow, we miss the fact that God uses us right here, with a teachable heart, in any situation.
Finding joy in the everyday – contentment in day-to-day life – satisfaction in where God has placed us – those are the things that will bring our hearts to the right place.
Working hard is awesome, and not to be discredited at all. But life is about the journey just as much as it is about reaching our end goals. Go for that thing, work hard, and accomplish it; but don’t forget that every part of that process is important too.
But what can bring joy to every part of our lives is more than just the feeling of attainment. It’s being content because of who God is and His presence with us every day of our lives.
“You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing.”
Nothing else can provide us with a joy and hope that cannot be taken away (John 16:22), a peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7), and an abundance of hope (Romans 15:13). No person or thing can give us the satisfaction that comes from God Himself – from doing exactly what He has for us to do – from knowing how much He loves us and has a plan for us.
In being satisfied in Him, we can do great things because He is working through us. We can experience the exhilaration of life because He is directing us. We can live our lives to the fullest because we are living new lives in Him.
When those things permeate our everyday lives, we find we are satisfied with the day-to-day – because it’s less about doing and more about being.
Please don’t get me wrong. Diplomas and paychecks and families and possessions are amazing things, and blessings of God. But if we’re just looking to that next thing in order to find our happiness, we’ll be wildly disappointed.
Instead, we can find joy in everything because of the radical love of God made manifest in our lives. As we seek Him, He will reveal Himself to us. We’ll see His blessings. His splendor. His overwhelming grace for us.
Friend, be happy with the journey. Success by the world’s standards can never last, but the joy we find in resting in God’s grace for us can and does.
So, yes, work. Work hard, love hard, live hard; experience life to the fullest. And trust God in knowing that His plan for your life is best. I promise it is.
Find joy in the journey – because for right now, that’s exactly where God has you.