This week has been marked with a seemingly endless to-do list as I pack up my belongings and prepare to move to a new city and start a new chapter of my life. I am excited for grad school and in my life, changes are commemorated more by looking backwards at all that is coming to an end than by looking forwards. As such, I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting about what I’ve accomplished this summer and everything I have to be grateful for.
I’ve walked across an entire country, climbed mountains in Spain, France and the USA, tried wildly interesting cuisine and ate my weight in gelato, stargazed in rural Spanish villages, the Adirondacks and St. Peter’s Square, and had the immense privilege of working on a meaningful project in my hometown.
You could say its been a pretty amazing ride.
And I am so grateful. I really am. But I have to admit that I have also spent a whole lot of energy this summer focusing on the one thing I don’t have.
But isn’t that always the way it is? That in the midst of all our blessings, we’re fixated on that one elusive next step.
Maybe we’re restless because we want to travel; to get out and see the world. Or perhaps we’re restless because we’re longing for a life adventure partner or we’re striving to find a job that fills us with purpose and meaning.
Are you with me?
C.S. Lewis, one of my favourite authors, once wrote:
If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.
You see, we’re not supposed to ever feel complete. The restlessness..the struggle..it points us to God. And because of this, I am sure that if I had the one thing I so long for now, there would be something else to strive for.
The only time we’re meant to fully be at peace is when we’re united with the Lord. This thirst, this hunger we experience, is a longing for Heaven and for union with God.
Because God has made us for Himself, our hearts are restless until they rest in Him.
// St. Augustine of Hippo.
So, I resolve to accept the restlessness this autumn, the uneasiness, and the uncertainty. And I resolve to spend more time with Christ in prayer, trusting Him with complete abandon and resting in the knowledge that God wants my happiness even more than I do. Finally, I resolve to practice gratitude in order to better appreciate all of the beauty in my life today.
As I return to my packing, I’d love to know: Are you feeling restless? What helps you to cultivate peace in the midst of a transition?