Let’s Live in This Moment

by | Aug 13, 2014 | Trust


Sliding into the booth at a favorite restaurant, a friend and I select salads from the menu before beginning a long overdue conversation. And the first question she asks once the menu is lying flat on the table is one that I am currently asked repeatedly by everyone I bump into.  A question I can’t answer yet.

“When are you moving to England?”

Though it seems like a simple question, much like the common greeting, “How are you?” I’m aware that often people don’t really want to know how you are doing, they are extending polite interest. My ENFP personality struggles with how much I should share when the date of our move doesn’t really affect anyone but my family. But she is a good friend. She gets a long and complicated answer.

This isn’t a conventional move for us. Not an upward financial decision that means bigger and more comfortable. And that doesn’t fit into the typical box people make for this scenario.

When someone asks, “What does England have that we don’t,” I’m clued in that no matter how much information I spew from my mouth, understanding will be like the solar system.


Like Abraham and Sarah, we are moving to a different country without knowing all the details (Genesis 12). While I would like to think Sarah was concerned about paint colors, lamps, paychecks and choosing a house in a safe neighborhood, I think she was more concerned about obedience. Had she known about the hurdles they would face along the journey, she might’ve let Abraham travel by himself.


“The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” John 3:8

If these words in John’s Gospel are truth, then why do we insist on knowing all the details before we risk saying yes to what scares us? No matter how much we attempt to harness wind and condense it down to the smallness of our experiences, the way the Spirit moves people cannot be figured out.

Spiritual movements aren’t rational, predictable or explainable.  And they often don’t make practical sense.

But faith that hasn’t been tested isn’t really faith.


On a chilly night during our vacation, cuddled up in blankets with warm cups of decaf, we watched Bear Grylls interview Zac Ephron on Running Wild. Their exchange becomes my opus for the days we have left.

After Zac crawls on his belly across a piece of rope anchored between two cliffs, Bear compliments his ability to conquer fear, leading to a vulnerable admission.

Zac: “Everything in your body says don’t do it . . . but (starting out as an actor) my parents told me, ‘If you don’t break through that wall of fear, nothing good is going to come.’ In my roles and my work, I search for things that are going to push me to my limit.” As he looks out over the horizon, he says, “This has been one of the best trips in the world for me.  . . . . being purely in this moment. I feel just completely free.”

Bear: “A real lesson that one, isn’t it? We’re all guilty of that aren’t we? We worry and live in the past or the future and lose the magic of right now.”

Zac: “You only live once you know? Remember this moment, because this is it. Live right now.”


If we are not pushing past our limits to risk bravely for the Kingdom, then what good will come of our life? Everything in you will ask the what, where, when and how questions and God will respond “Wait and trust Me.”

Will you trust Him to get you from one mountain top to the next without knowing the details? Or will you choose to remain comfortable, looking at the same scenery from your living room window?

I’m thankful Abraham and Sarah said yes to the magic of right now, otherwise their story might not have made the cut in the Bible.

Walking out our faith is for the brave, the risk takers and the adventurous who are captivated by the moment, not worried about the future or fixated on the past.


Between sips of lemon water, I tell my friend, “We don’t have an exact date for our move yet but we are hopeful about the first part of September.”

Every time I hear myself repeat the same answer, I live in the moment, thankful for what is right in front of me.


Linking with Jennifer and Holley.


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  1. 1lori_1

    This is my life story right now. Trying to decide when is the best time to retire and move back “home” so I can hopefully have some years before my folks leave for Heaven. You have bravely made the first step, the saying “yes” part. All the other parts the Holy Spirit will work out, it’s the initial step that’s most important. I will be in prayer for your big move. Someday I would love to go there, Lincolnshire is where my Dad’s side is from………I can’t wait to see what God has for you there!

    • Shelly Miller

      Sometimes the more we try to plan out the details the more entrenched we become in the same situation. I think moving forward is sometimes like popping the cork on a new season, once you decide to do it, new life bubbles up everywhere. Hope you’ll let me know if you come to England so we can visit.

  2. Kris Camealy

    I’ve been waiting eagerly for this post all afternoon, Shelly. It’s so good–so right on. And that scripture from John?! YEEEESSSSS! I love this–and I love you. Praying for wild faith and brave obedience.

    • Shelly Miller

      I love being a bystander to what God is doing in you Kris. It’s beautiful to behold and quite inspiring. Thanks for being one of my cheerleaders, you bless me with your friendship and kindness. It matters.

  3. Lynn D. Morrissey

    Shelly, while not quite so dramatic as moving to England, the Genesis Scripture about Abraham “going without knowing” became a drumbeat in my life, and I knew that I had to march to the beat of a different drummer: God. I was well ensconced in my career as executive director for the world’s USO, and suddenly, baby Sheridan arrived on the scene. By the time she was five months old, God had made it clear to me that I was to get out of my “country” and head for land unknown–going without knowing. I didn’t leap across an ocean, but it felt like it at the time. I knew I was to raise Sheridan, but that was all. I was frightened (a LOT), but more frightened not to take the risk and obey God. Just as you are responding to questions with answers you do not yet know (because God has not yet fully revealed them), I did the same. A two-star (major) general called me, and basically said I was nuts to leave the USO and my career with no future plans in sight. But what future would I have, really, if I were not in God’s plan? He did for me what He will do for you–and that will be to reveal the plan a step at a time. By the time September rolls around, you will have one more puzzle piece in place. In the meantime, I know you are drawing closer to God (and your family) and eagerly anticipating receiving your marching orders. When you do, they will be just bright enough, like stars dotting the night’s sky, to lead you closer to your new horizons.
    I am sooooooo excited for you! Rest assured, I’m very excited to watch this all unfolding–real-time, in the present.

    • Shelly Miller

      I know you get this Lynn because you have lived it. And I’m always grateful for your faith in me and encouragement. The day God joined us together was surely providential. Your personal stories are a gift.

      • Lynn D. Morrissey

        Oh my gosh: No question. God’s providence is evident to us both in just how he brought me to your blog when you linked to another blog in a way you normally didnt, our St. L connection, our similar attitudes and joys, love for England, etc. Just amazing! Though I shouldn’t be amazed, in one sense, b/c God has orchestrated the whole thing! =] YOUR stories are a gift, and you are going to be sharing them from a new vantage point across the Pond, and they are going to ripple out across the world! Just imagine that, Shelly! A point of clarification, b/c I was typing too quickly: I was not exec. dir. of the “world’s USO,” but the world’s largest USO. And one thing I didn’t say in my going-without-knowing story, is that besides the privilege of raising Sheridan, God led me to speaking and writing for Him. I think He had to pry me loose of the familiar world of USO to cause me to trust Him to open new doors, and He did. I also send a leading out now from my familiar territory at home (not necessarily *from* my home) but just a new world. Not sure what it means, but once again (just like w/ you), I need to go w/o knowing. Let’s pray for each other!
        Love you, love you!

  4. Mary Gemmill

    Shelly, there was a moment in time when the Spirit of God moved one me and I found myself uttering these words: Lord, I will give all this up, to be in the centre of your will. I had my dream home and life was good. BUT God took me at my word and within 2 months I had a new job, new home, new church, new city…and the people I left simply could not understand and many would not speak to me ever again because they through I was ” nuts” and had fallen into sin by leaving that church. WELL. all I can say is that it was totally worth it. While I thought my life had just become pretty much perfect, God wanted to take me on, to stretch me and grown me and give me new challenges..He was enlarging the place of my tent, well and truly. I had to ‘let go’ of those who didn’t understand, and just be obedient. I have no regrets whatsoever and I know that one day you will say exactly the same for the plans and purposes of God for our lives are for GOOD and not for evil….and He surely does take care of His own. I hear you loud and clear and will continue to pray. xx

    • Shelly Miller

      No regrets for me either Mary. Though this is our first international move it isn’t the first time we’ve done something like this. We’re pretty savvy about staying the course, knowing God is with us. I love your spirit, tenacity and faithfulness, its inspiring.

  5. ro elliott

    The scripture that comes to mind for you and really all restless hearts…”For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God.” I think our internal compass is always searching for our true North… it’s searching until that day… for places where God is laying the foundations in our lives… I know God has a wonderful adventure for you… blessings as you keep letting the Spirit lead your family!!!

    • Shelly Miller

      So true Ro and such a good reminder. Thank you.

  6. Leslie Durham

    Oh my. This one goes into my list of my top favorites of your articles. I loved it so much. Very refreshing. I have forwarded it onto my daughter who leaves for Honduras on Saturday. I am jealous of you and your adventure. And I am thrilled for you and this time of your life. Live Free!!

    • Jillie

      DITTO! You’ve said it all right here!

    • Shelly Miller

      I saw you post something about your daughter on Facebook Leslie. Wow. I know she must be excited and it may be bittersweet for you. It will be life changing, no doubt. Thank you for your sweet words, I appreciate your encouragement greatly.

  7. Ginger Harrington

    What an adventure you are on. I am blessed in the reading as you share. Visiting from Coffee for your Heart.

    • Shelly Miller

      So glad to know you are following along Ginger. Adventure is a good word for it, one I find myself using a lot lately.

  8. Sarah Knepper

    Wow! Good luck in your journey and may God bless you deeply. Visiting from Coffee for Your Heart

    • Shelly Miller

      Thank you Sarah, appreciate your kindness.

  9. DeanneMoore

    “If we are not pushing past our limits to risk bravely for the Kingdom,
    then what good will come of our life?” I have been asking this question as I live in the moments of transition contained in the place where my life has been for a very long time. I know your moments of waiting haven’t come without times of questioning and and seeking. When we get the answer then “now” is the time to act. It’s called obedience, and yes, it takes a brave heart—a heart that trusts. You know I am praying for you as you have grabbed hold to pull up your pegs and have begun your journey toward the “place where God will show you.” I have so much joy for you even as I look out the living room window and see what I saw yesterday. Life is never stagnant…I know this truth so I hold to the never-changing God who is fulfilling his plan in this very moment. Love you, Shelly. Thank you for letting me, all of us, in on your journey. Waiting with you with expectancy for all that God has for you and your family. (Love the photos of the church, BTW…beautiful…)

    • Shelly Miller

      My aunt took me down this road one day after after swimming in the lake. She wanted me to see the organic beauty because she knows how much I love to take photos. It rained that day. So I went back with H after a grocery store run at the perfect time of the day, when the sun was going down slowly, just before dinner. It was glorious. Thanks for all your love and support, always. And I’m praying for your next adventure too, the one that is still a mystery. 😉

  10. Caryn Jenkins Christensen

    What a beautiful reminder of choosing to live in the moment. Vulnerable, scared, yet obedient. I’m sad that I won’t get to meet you in real life before you move, but grateful for the technology that allows us to stay connected. Thank you for living out your faith.

    • Shelly Miller

      I thought we met at Allume Caryn, at the Jumping Tandem reunion. Am I thinking wrong? And yes, I’m so thankful that what I do won’t at all be affected by our move, except late night Facebook chats will carry on while I’m sleeping. ha! Thanks for being here, appreciate you.

      • Caryn Jenkins Christensen

        We absolutely could have met Shelly ~ I was just a deer in headlights with both retreats! JTreat was my first retreat and when I look back at pictures now, I think, oh my goodness…*they* were there? Allume was the first large retreat I’ve been to…so again…deer in headlights. It certainly isn’t you! I’ve got a couple of writer friends who live in England and we’re able to connect on Facebook, it will just take a little bit of figuring out. All part of the adventure… <3

  11. Karrilee Aggett

    I know you won’t be surprised that I sat over a cup of coffee and had a conversation just this morning about living in the now and learning to let go and trust and that we are made to be risk takers – even us, who panic at that very thought! Praying for you, friend! Trusting with you for His perfect timing!

  12. Jody Ohlsen Collins

    Shelly, Kimberlee Ireton and I were on the phone for a long time today talking about the way we’ve both come to the place in our lives about what’s really important. How we know what we WANT/NEED to do according to the Holy Spirit’s leading and what we DONT want to do…. Life is too short to not decide that sooner rather than later.
    “If we are not pushing past our limits to risk bravely for the Kingdom, then what good will come of our life?”

    Praying for H Miller family (sticky note on my desk reminds me :-).

  13. Lori Harris

    Good morning, dear Shelly. I’m catching up with you and friend, I love the way you tell a story. I know I tell you that so very often, but I do. You draw me in, ttell me what you want to tell me, and then leave me with a thought like a smooth round rock that I carry around in my pocket for days.
    Praying you and H through this God-sized move. Traveling mercies and confidence in things unseen.
    And happy belated birthday! You wear your years beautifully.

  14. BlessingCounter - Deb Wolf

    Shelly, I’m a new visitor coming over from Michelle’s. I can’t wait to learn more about your adventure. Stretching and risking bravely for the Kingdom . . . you have no idea how many you will inspire as you step out in faith. Many blessings to you. I’m looking forward to getting to know you better we have many www friends in common.

  15. Sarah Donegan

    “Faith that hasn’t been tested isn’t really faith.” Great post! I didn’t know Zac was so deep. 🙂

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