Updated: May 12, 2022
While there seems to be a lot of things that I could complain about in this particular season of life, I have made a decision not to do so. It is a choice and that’s important to recognize that while I may not choose what happens to me, I can choose how I respond. I have not always looked at life this way, and there have been times in my life when I wondered, “Why me?” Instead at this point after being in quarantine for over four months, and being extended for another 30 days, I have chosen to focus on things that I am thankful for.
So today, I choose to be thankful for life. In spite of the difficulties that come with living – managing a family, academic responsibilities, social isolation and distancing, I am alive. Since the beginning of the year, there have been individuals who started this year, but are no longer here. Over the past several months I have lost friends and acquaintances who were relatively young in age. In my lifetime, I have lost friends and acquaintances through various means – homicide, suicide, illness, and many of these individuals were also young and their passing was unexpected. Yet here I am.
I believe it is good to take inventory of one’s life. It is not survivor’s guilt, but more of an acknowledgement and appreciation that life is a blessing. It is a precious gift from God that should not be taken for granted. Aside from being precious, it is also fragile; therefore, a treasure that should be enjoyed each day. The enjoyment of life is not in a hedonistic you only live once (YOLO) kind of way, but more so a valuable and expendable resource that you want to maximize in a qualitative way.
To live life in that way, requires more than appreciation, it also requires purpose. What is the purpose of my life? If there is a higher purpose for my existence, do I know what that purpose is? If I know what that purpose is, am I willing to live it out in my life?
Maybe those are questions that others are wrestling with as well. Is life worth living? Unemployed. Underemployed. Overworked. In the midst of an unstable academic year. Student loans. Verge of homelessness. Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. Depressed about the present and anxious about future. There may be questions as to what is your purpose in life, and whether life is worth living.
Well do not give up hope! There is a plan for your life, even if that plan is unclear at the moment. How do I know? Well, because my belief system tells me that no matter what my environment looks like, has nothing to do with my destination. Look at it this way. You are on a journey, a road trip, to somewhere you have never been before, but you have heard good things about and so you are headed there. You have plans, or at least you did until it started to rain, and it is still raining - hard. You have the option of turning around and giving up on the trip, pulling to the side of the road to wait out the storm, or you can creep through the storm with a quiet determination until you get to your destination. While the latter two options may seem appealing, they do not change your situation or bring you closer to your destination. However, the last option, while you may have to slow down and reach your destination a little later than you may have wanted, puts you closer to your destination despite what’s going on around you.
Life is worth living. Keep driving to your destination and you will arrive. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11.