It wasn’t until 2pm that I finally removed the plate, fork and empty juice glass from my daughter’s place setting at the table, a residue of scrambled eggs still apparent. A few minutes later, I received a text from her saying she made it safely back to campus and the food I sent in plastic containers fit perfectly into the miniature refrigerator in her dorm room.

The loaf of bread got smashed in her suitcase.

But I didn’t read that text until an hour after she sent it. I was lost in the pages of a book on the living room couch, attempting to soothe my aching heart that is missing her presence.

I’ve been trying to decide which of the one million things floating through my mind I might share with you for this series. But the distance between reality and what God requires of me feels like a vast canyon of swirling thoughts.

God is teaching me about what it means to be sober minded.

Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up. You’re not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It’s the same with Christians all over the world. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ—eternal and glorious plans they are!—will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, he does. ~1 Peter 5:8-11, MSG

It would be easy for me to slip into sadness and stay stuck there in the past. But God is reminding me that He is faithful and all He requires is trust.

I need repetition and I won’t apologize for that. There can be no faith without doubt.

During my daughter’s visit home with us, I found myself snapping random photographs – of her curled up on the couch, laughing at quips from favorite sitcoms, walking to the car parked on the driveway, joking with her bestie. I want to remember because I can’t revisit those moments.

That couch and television are going to a consignment shop next week.

The best things in life come with risk and forward movement, of sowing seeds in new soil and trusting God for outcomes.

Staying comfortable results in a life that is stagnate. And I’m not signing up for that. I’m moving to London, remember?

But living in the future is equally detrimental.  Waiting for fulfillment at the expense of the moment is a breeding ground for discontent.

Now/here spells nowhere. To be fully present to whoever or whatever is immediately before us is to pitch a tent on the wilderness of Nowhere. It is an act of radical trust – trust that God can be encountered at no other time and in no other place than in the present moment. Being full present in the now is perhaps the premier skill of the spiritual life. ~Brennan Manning, Ruthless Trust

While my daughter hangs up the clothes I carefully pressed and eats dinner with her roommate on campus, I’ll curl up on the couch with H and watch the Good Wife during our last moments of Sabbath.

Sometimes you must die to the past and future, take up your cross, and follow Jesus through your kitchen and living room.

What is keeping you from being fully present and sober minded, living now/here?


 I won’t be sharing my posts on social networking channels daily because who wants to see that much of me, really? If you want to follow our adventure to London subscribe to the blog in the side bar and posts will slide quietly into you inbox. Start from the beginning of the series here.