We grabbed our tiny purses and decided to go.
How will we get there? By train!
My friend and I wandered the streets with absolutely no agenda —exploring, stopping for photo ops, talking to strangers —I would almost dare to say this unplanned day was perfect.
I’d like to share a few lessons this random day of adventure taught me. Hopefully these nuggets will help you find your way to your own adventure!
1. It Doesn’t Take Much to Have Joy
We met a man named James. He was sitting on a bench by himself so we decided to strike up a conversation and oh were we blown away by this man’s perseverance, kind spirit, dedication, and joy.
For 20 minutes we talked with James, listening to his story and asking questions to learn more about him. He lives in a shelter not far from where we were, and everyday he has shown up 1 and 2 hours early to work for years…sometimes walking over 10 miles to make it there. He is a hard-worker who is super compliant and always willing to help wherever he can. Even though he hasn’t really made a substantial amount of money or made his way up any corporate ladders, James has something that is rare and precious these days…an unshakeable joy.
James taught me that joy is not circumstantial, it’s a choice. He also taught me that my chronic lateness is more so a sign of entitlement and selfishness but that’s a whole different blog post for another day. *sigh* How interesting it is that those with the least can often be the most content and grateful.
2. God Knows What You Need Before You Do
This lesson can be illustrated with two different stories so I’m going to share both, in short.
My Friend – so the friend that I went on this random adventure with has only been my friend for oh about 5 or 6 months now and somehow we’ve managed to get attached at the hip. We’re basically now unable to function without at least a text or 20 a day from each other.
I’ll try to say this without slighting any of my other friends whom I deeply value and love a lot, but I found it very interesting that I didn’t realize I was missing a necessary friend until she became a part of my life. I almost can’t remember life without her. She has become such a staple (ha! That was an unintentional pun —she gets it.) in my life.
She tells me that she prayed for a friend like me and can remember exactly where she was when she prayed it. And me? Well, I wasn’t looking or praying for anybody, but once she came along, I couldn’t help but realize, “God knows what you need, before you do.”
And I’m so thankful He knew we needed our friendship for such a time as this…and forevermore cause she’s stuck with me for life now :)
The second instance I realized this truth was at the end of our day, we were about to head back to the train to head home when we realized we’d missed it and had to wait over an hour for the next one.
Thankfully I had some friends that lived within walking distance so I called them and within minutes we were sitting on their couch, using their bathroom, and chatting it up like this was a part of the plan all along.
God knew what we needed, before we did. So he saw fit that years ago I would meet these people and become like family to them so that years later I could call them on a dime and say “hey! I’m coming over now and you’re driving me and a friend to the train station in an hour.”
Ok, I didn’t demand anything, I asked, but I was completely blown away at how God knew when we started our journey that day, that we would need my friends and he saw fit to have them be home, ready, and available to meet our last needs of the adventurous day.
3. Life is Designed to Be an Adventure
To-Do lists, tasks, schedules, phone calls and emails. They never, ever end. And the sad thing is, the days I most remember are the days I’m doing none of the aforementioned things. My greatest memories are when I’m out living life with people.
I firmly believe we weren’t created or wired to do the same thing everyday and be satisfied. Ok, maybe I’m just trying to rationalize my personal inconsistencies here, but seriously, I believe God is an adventurer!
If He wasn’t, I don’t believe there would be such a thing as the mysteries of God.
If He wasn’t, I think He would just reveal all of Himself to us at once, but He doesn’t!
He pre-designed our beings, His word, and this world, to be an ever-unfolding mystery full of wonder, awe, insights and discoveries.
I learned that a life well lived is one that honors God, but it’s also one that follows God, unplanned and unscripted, wherever He may lead.
In Matthew 4, Jesus said to these dudes who would soon become his disciples, “Come follow me.” He never said where they were following Him too. They followed blindly, only knowing the what, not the where or the why.
I believe life is supposed to be lived with unexpected adventure.
Now I’m not saying ditch your commitments, but I am saying create space and leave margin in your day. Avoid over-scheduling your life —which I’m very guilty of — and create more room for God to lead you to some unplanned places.
Believe me, He knows all the dope spots and the perfect time to get you there.
Trust. Follow. Enjoy Living.
The pic above is of me writing this post to you (not really).