Life is hard. All of us are doing our best to live a life of peace. A life of joy. We want to experience the great dream of every human being – living a life of purpose.
It sounds simple. But it is far from easy. We continually face difficult circumstances. We struggle with a sense of awareness, cleverly deceiving not only one another but ourselves as well. We make wrong choices and have to face the consequences. We experience the ends we long for only to discover they do not bring the peace and joy we assumed would accompany them.
It seems like there is some sort of secret, some key element we are missing. It often feels like the life we want is just around the corner. But what is that corner?!
Here is the truth. Our lives will never be perfectly fulfilling, at least in the way we imagine it.
The secret to vibrant living is not discovering the right circumstance, it is not solving specific or even general problems. The key to a vibrant life is not whatever it is you are waiting for. The key is how you wait.
Suffering and a sense of dissatisfaction are part of what it means to be human. We make it worse. Because we imagine a life where suffering does not exist. And that, quite frankly is not life.
I don’t want to be a downer, but it’s the truth. The key is in how we respond to it.
We can throw up our hands and refuse to accept the necessity of waiting. Or we can say, “If waiting is so important, I am just going to refuse to do anything”.Waiting is the most important thing. But it is not the only thing. How we wait is an ever-present reality of this life.
Active and Passive
So, here is how accepting the beauty of waiting can unlock vibrant living in your life.
There is a difference between active and passive waiting. Active waiting accepts the reality of waiting but allows us to go out and work, enjoy. In essence, it is a call to try. If we chose this perspective, it sets us free to not carry the burden of having to shed every negative emotion. It invites us to feel our negative emotions, to learn from them, and to grow in intimacy with our fellow humans in the midst of our suffering.
Passive suffering moves from accepting waiting as an important reality to idolizing it as the only reality.
The truth is, we see glimpses of triumph, of victory. Glimpses of peace. And joy. It is a part of vibrant living. But it is not the whole thing. We can idolize success as well as failures. Triumph is one aspect of vibrant living, the easier one to accept. Suffering is another. If you are struggling, you are experiencing a reality of the human experience. It does not disqualify you from a vibrant existence. It actually invites you into it.