The Beauty of the Moment

Good afternoon from Managua, Nicaragua!

Over the past two months, I have had the opportunity to experience many amazing things.  From getting married, both in the United States and in Nicaragua, to our honeymoon in Mexico, to beginning our new adventure as a married couple in Nicaragua, there have been many “once in a lifetime” type of moments.  In reflecting on all of this, it has reminded me of the importance of being present in each moment.  In the book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible, the writer says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.”  (Ecclesiastes 3:1, NIV)  The writer then goes on to list both joyful and painful moments in life and encourages the reader to “be happy and do good while they live”.  The writer also talks about how God has “made everything beautiful in its time”. (Excerpts from Ecclesiastes 3:11, 12)  In reading this I think about how different seasons of my life have affected the person I am today and continue to impact the person I will be in the future.  The moments of our lives matter and should be appreciated.

The truth is I tend to be pretty bad at this at times.  If I am in the midst of a joyous moment, I tend to either think about what is coming next or wonder when it is going to end.  If I am in a season of pain, I dwell on how long it is going to last and how I can make it come to a quicker ending.  I believe this is pretty normal, and not always a bad thing, but it limits my ability to be present in whatever I am experiencing at that moment.  If is a time of happiness and blessings, I am unable to enjoy it completely because I have mentally moved on.  If it is a moment of pain and challenge, I limit my ability to learn the experience and grow.  In both cases, my inability to be in the moment has robbed me of something important and, I believe, something God desired to use in my life for good.  

My hope and prayer is that I can learn to slow down and experience each moment for what it is.  Whether good or bad, I want to be present and ready to grow.  I have learned so much over my year and a half in Nicaragua, but I believe I can learn even more I allow myself to live in the moment, even when it would feel better to check out.  I hope you consider doing the same in your life.  I believe there is a purpose for each moment in our lives, both the good and the bad.  As the writer said, God will make everything beautiful in its time.  I want to be present for the process instead of wishing I had years down the road.  Do you?

– James Belt

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