It was a day like any other. It was Saturday, so to cure my boredom, I decided to take a trip to the Dollar Tree. I collected five dollars worth of snacks and mildly entertaining items. No matter how many times I shop at that place, I still exclaim, "I can't believe this is one dollar!" at least once per visit. Suffice to say; it was a successful venture. Once I arrived back on my couch at home, I was stoked to try a sample of "Whisps Cheese Crisps." After I tasted the crunchy, delicious morsel, I somewhat involuntarily shouted, "Thank you, Jesus!" It's a sentence that we often say without thought, but this time it was different. I wasn't just grateful for my cheesy treat; I had a moment where I soaked in the present.
Work, the digital world, family, and so many other things fight for space in my mind. As an introspective person, it's often hard for me to disengage from the future and connect with life in the now. With that mentality, I end up with God in the back of my mind and think of Him more as an idea than a real presence. For whatever reason, that bite of cheese reminded me of how blessed I am. At that moment, I just thought, "how could we create something so simple that could bring us so much joy, if not for God? And how many more endless possibilities do we have that are beyond my comprehension?" I relayed this philosophical revelation to my friend, who said, "you should write a blog about that!" So here we are.
We think that to "unplug" from our anxieties, we need to go out in the woods or do something special that requires our full attention. When we feel like we're treading water, we think we need a major life change. Sometimes that is true, but there is power in the little things. No matter what we do, we move forward. Once we get a dream job or build a strong relationship, we think about the next step. But we can't enjoy creation if we don't stop to look around. It's in the day-to-day moments that we realize the awe of God's gifts. When we disregard things that make us happy simply because they seem to serve no other purpose, we ignore opportunities for clarity. Those pleasures that we deem unimportant can have a greater impact than we expect. Some of my most life-changing ideas came from a cup of Dutch Bros coffee.
"So I commend the enjoyment of life, because there is nothing better for a person under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany them in their toil all the days of the life God has given them under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 8:15
We gain nothing when we idolize worldly indulgences, but it's more than okay to care about things that bring us delight. Through self-awareness and prayer, we can get perspective on what will hurt us or help us. To follow Jesus, we should not conform to the world. Yet, we can appreciate what we see and do every day. It's easy to set our sights on the painful and confusing parts of life because they constantly try to demand our attention. And we can't ignore the hard truths if we want to move forward. However, we can stop to refresh. Life is a series of constant ups and downs. If we hold our breath until we get to the top of the "hill," then we will miss the view along the way. We don't know what's ahead; we find peace when we draw close to God.
With everything else going on in the world, it may seem silly to think God cares about your favorite food or a funny joke. But we glorify Him when we live with thanksgiving in our hearts. He wants us to learn how to enjoy our lives as we follow Jesus. We spend most of our time thinking about what's next, so let's take a few moments to think about what makes us happy now. When was the last time you stripped away the rest of the world and experienced simple happiness? What are some things that bring a smile to your face? When we seek God's presence in ordinary moments, no day is ever "like any other."
Written Content Coordinator at Sun Valley Community Church. An avid writer since the age of 5, who loves to explore new ideas and places. Inspired by Jesus, books, and travel.