To be honest, I wasn't a huge fan of the majority of this book. I guess I just wasn't feeling the connection between the author's experiences and my own. He was, or is, a far more emotional person than I am. But with that being said, the idea of living in the present has been weighing on me lately(as my last blog mentioned). And although Nouwen only really focused on that for one chapter, it was exactly what I needed to hear at the time I needed to hear it.
My life has no direction. This consumes my thoughts. I've been going to college off and on for the last four years without any real purpose. It feels like I'm spinning my wheels. So, to continue the metaphor, I find myself worried about when I'll finally get traction and take off. At the moment I'm unemployed, I dropped out of school again, and I've lost the ability to do the one thing that has always been a constant in my life, sports. There really isn't anything about the present I care to focus on; I'm just waiting for a job, waiting to heal, waiting to move out, waiting for motivation to set in.
So it's been a struggle to focus on where I am instead of where I want to be. But in doing so I've been more driven to make the most of the little things that happen throughout the day. That's what I've taken away from Nouwen's book more than anything.
But, unless I missed it, Nouwen forgot one crucial part to living in the moment: where that moment lies in eternity. We were made to last forever. And while Today is all we have, if Today is not viewed in the backdrop of Forever then we've missed the point. I've only ever been motivated by the temporal rewards to what I'm doing. I want a job because I have bills to pay. I want to play volleyball to win and have fun doing it. I want to move out for the freedom. What I should be focusing on is the eternal implications are of my activities. I need to work because My Master says I need to be productive to the society He put me in. I need to play sports to bring glory to The One who gave me the ability to excel at them; my joy in playing brings Him joy. Every day I have, and every thing I do in that day must be for the right reasons--the everlasting reasons. Unfortunately I'm a bit of an idiot, so God had to physically break me to get me to slow down and realize I had it all wrong.