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This Summer's Lesson: You Are Here

This Summer has been slinging lessons about patience, consistent authenticity, and slow transformation. As I wondered when I would finally “get there” — wherever it is I’ve been trying to get — I began to ponder the phrase, “You Have Arrived.”

When I look up an address on a map and then go there, I have successfully arrived at that location. That location might be my friend’s house, maybe even a house they built themselves. At that point in history, that house belongs to my friend and that house is located at 123 XYZ Lane in Placeville, State, United Country on planet Earth. What was the name of that location and what was happening there 20 years ago? 200 years ago? 2,000 years ago? What will be happening there 200 years into the future? Will it still be located at that same exact place with the same exact environment?

Arrival suggests completion. It’s done, I arrived to that place. But what does it mean to have arrived when a year from now the world will be an entire year older, with all the changes that entails? I’ve realized that there is no arriving. There is no “getting there” because nature does not exactly “cycle” — a word that implies repetition — it spirals. It’s more like a coil that infinitely moves forward, never perfectly repeating itself, but a process with noticeable patterns.

I can expect that the geese will begin to migrate when autumn is near, but I can never know what exact calendar day that will be, or which aerial path they will take. I can see the thunder clouds approaching but there is no guarantee they will produce rain for my home at any point. I can expect that there will be lessons with each season, but I can’t possibly know what those lessons will be.

I am never at a predictable point; every experience is always some variation of a loose pattern, woven and influenced by time’s progression.

Too often, I despair at not having “arrived” yet. It’s always someone’s fault: if only they lived closer, if only I had worked harder, if only we had more money, bla bla bla. I easily forget that everything is Divinely timed. Everything teaches me something. There are no accidents.

It’s said, “we are not the sum of our parts” — I believe we are the sum of a lifetime of moments. A collection of both mundane and spectacular points on a timeline.

There is no arrival, there is only where I’m at right now, at this point in time, with these circumstances and these resources. I can look forward and have an idea of what might be a part of the next season of my journey, but that’s all any of it is, a journey, a season, and, ultimately, the present.

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