Do you ever feel as though thinking about your future is like looking through a dense fog? You can’t see very far ahead. Maybe one step ahead, if that. I’ve been feeling like that lately—not sure what’s next, how things are going to work out, or if they even will.
A few days ago, I was driving on a foggy morning. The fog definitely made it harder to drive simply because I couldn’t see far ahead, yet it was still a pretty morning. Fog creates its own beauty. There was something about the fog that made the day seem peaceful; it muted the noise and seemed calmer than normal. Even though it was harder to see, the beauty of the morning was evident. The fog would move in wisps across the road. It wrapped around the trees and made them look mysterious. It made me notice surroundings that I can forget to stop and see. Such a small difference can remind me of what is always there. In the natural, fog causes us to focus on what is closer to us.
It made me think about my life. It feels like it is hard to see what my future holds. Sometimes, it’s hard to even see the next step. I can become frustrated when I can’t see what’s ahead and feel as though I am in a fog, unknowing. Waiting (or trying to wait) on God isn’t easy. Most of the time it’s hard and I become impatient. I want to know what’s next because I feel like I’m not moving forward or doing what God’s asking me to do. However, when I focus on what’s next, I miss what’s here. I forget to look around and see what is surrounding me. While I often get frustrated by the “fog” keeping me from seeing far ahead, maybe I need to appreciate the beauty of things around me. Perhaps God wants me to stop and notice small things that I often take for granted, like the people I see or events in daily life. Jesus made a point of taking time for people. He clearly thinks they’re important enough to stop and listen to—even when he was helping someone else, he paused to talk to the woman who had touched him (Luke 8:40-56).
Like missing the beauty of a foggy morning, it’s often the small events in life that I don’t see as important—things like writing a note, expressing thanks, or giving someone a compliment. I remember telling someone once how much I liked the shirt she was wearing. (It really was a fun shirt!) She replied that now when she wore it, she’d enjoy it more. It’s crazy to think that someone could actually enjoy wearing a piece of clothing more simply because I slowed down enough to give her a compliment. Sometimes, small things can make a bigger impact than I would think possible.
Perhaps God doesn’t want me to see too far ahead because he wants me to enjoy what’s in the moment. Whatever is right in front of me can be something of beauty. Jesus did tell us not to worry about the future because God knows what we need (Matthew 6:25-34). Can I become so focused on the future that I miss today? While it’s important to keep moving forward, maybe God is trying to remind me that I don’t need to take a big step forward, just one small step at a time. He knows the future and will lead me if I keep moving step by step. I am sure I will become impatient again, but hope that I can remember that there is beauty here and now. Learning how to trust God one step at a time is what I need to learn in the fog.
What is God showing you today? Is there something you can slow down and notice?