The other day, I had someone say something to me that deeply encouraged me. It was one of those comments one can easily brush past in the moment. But, when reflecting on it later, you begin to realize the impact it had on you. The same can be said for comments that may not be as encouraging.
In God’s timing, these two types of comments happened in one day. During part of the day, I was greatly encouraged and my heart was full of gladness. During another part, my heart ached.
I’ve never understood the part of life where it is natural to reflect on a situation later and see it much differently than you do in the moment. I’ve never understood why I tend to learn more about a situation in the 12 hours directly following it than any other time. Maybe this is because I am constantly trying to be more aware of what I say to whom and when. I also deeply value understanding all that people say to me, good and bad.
I am notorious for constantly adding commentary here and there about an event or experience well after it has occurred. It can be awhile before I feel like I’ve said all I can say. Maybe this is because I want to glean all that I can from life experiences. Part of that gleaning means deciding if I need to reach out to someone or if my afterthoughts are to be kept to myself.
I guess one could say I see the importance of making the most of an event or situation for all parties involved before I consider it in the past. I am a believer in telling someone thank you for this or that days later. I believe in saying thanks, period, even if it may be at an awkward or unnatural moment.
I believe in living life in the moment. But, I also believe in moments lingering on for a while afterward.
There is nothing wrong with making the good moments last a little longer. For instance, my engagement and wedding day lasted longer by all the people who asked me about them. It seemed like I relieved those precious moments, thus, in a way, making them last longer.
I think God teaches us how to live life in the moment by making a moment last longer in our thoughts. Again, I understand this can be for good or bad moments. I think in this lingering God strives to teach us more about ourselves and our behaviors as well as more about Himself and who He is.
All this to say, I believe it is important to reflect on circumstances as they happen, 12 hours after, or even days or years after. Most importantly, it is important to tell those who unknowingly say the right thing at the right time thank you.
My call to you is this: Live life in the moment. But, do not be afraid to let moments linger, the good and the bad. God uses the good and bad to draw us closer to Him with a heart of thanksgiving. It may take some time realize what exactly God intended in those moments, but the lessons are there if we choose to be open to them.