Are we raised to thrive on adventure? Are we constantly seeking an additive that adds flavour to our ordinary?
I would describe myself as passionate. I’m determined. I had big dreams as a teenager to travel the world, go on mission trips, get into a top university, be the lead in my field…
Today we teach our generation to aspire to great things. We inspire one another to dream of the impossible, whether that be the development of new technology, running a sub-2 hour marathon or moving half way across the world.
None of this is wrong.
Dreams & Wild Adventure
Dreams are in all of us. They are beautiful expressions of our identity. My dreams find their roots in my faith in God and a desire to know him more clearly.
At 17 I knew God was calling me to go overseas and at 18 headed out to Guinea where I grew in faith, served God, learned a lot. Then I moved to university and witnessed friends coming to faith. Last year God miraculously provided for a trip to Japan (read the story behind Japan here). This year I’ve lived and journeyed with amazing people and started to work in the city. Wild adventures!
Life was (and is) golden! I continuously thank God for all of these adventures. They weren’t easy but they were wild as I saw God move in each of them, I only desired more to keep being obedient and serving him.
Globally Stripped of Adventure
6 weeks ago our fast pace, free-travelling, adventuring world changed. Our adventure loving nation suddenly had all ‘adventure’ taken away. Initially, I couldn’t work from home and really thought that I should stay where I was, even as all my housemates moved back home in a matter of days. I knew God has called me to this job and that He was working in it.
I got so angry as everything was stripped away. What was the plan? What I was meant to ‘do’ in this? I was determined to stay in the adventure of where I was but then working in-office got banned. I stayed a week longer, expecting God to bring the next adventure that I still wasn’t seeing. It turned out that God was saying, ‘Eleanor it’s time to go home for a little while.’
A lot of people currently feel as though all the adventure has been stolen. Perhaps some are wondering if they will ever feel excited, or motivated or see a mountain-top moment.
Imagine you are hungry, probably bored and craving. It’s so easy to go to the store, pick up a cheap snack filled with sugar, salts and additives. We get a quick fix and a sugar rush that makes us feel good. But when the additive runs low we are hungry again.
Alternatively, you could slowly and methodically open a cupboard, take out what you already have and make something substantial. It may look less exciting and not have any additives but it can still taste good if you make it well.
My anger came because I was seeking the adventure. All my previous wild adventuring genuinely occurred naturally, as I lived to seek God and make the most of what I had in front of me.
A season for everything
Currently the whole world is pretty much on lockdown. We are going slow and unable to run towards a wild adventure of travel, day trips or socials. Our days look ordinary. But there can still be good in the ordinary. We can cultivate goodness in what we have. We can enjoy new things, share with family, spend time soaking up wisdom.
Being home has been wonderful! Doing life with mum and dad again is so special. I’ve reconnected with old friends and neighbours. I’ve had time to read books and learn new recipes.
We can live farming, building and raising family, crafting, and being faithful where we are. It’s not our job to find adventure. It’s not our purpose to constantly be the heroic, inspiring, crazy dream achiever. These dreams and passions are important, yes, but we must learn to have gratitude where we are and trust that the adventure will come in God’s timing and planning.
What are you chasing? Are you missing adventures? What small things are you grateful for?
If anyone is interested, I really recommend the book ‘Garden City.’ It’s all about the idea of Genesis and cultivating good in the things we do, and bringing God’s goodness to the every day.
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