We’d left our home in Japan 22 hours before. There’d been a six hour wait at the military terminal before the first three hour flight. Then another three hour layover before the second 10 hour flight. When we arrived in the States we had to run to our connecting flight and managed to get there 10 minutes before the doors closed.
I was a wreck. Juggling two toddlers and two car seats as well as trying to keep said toddlers happy had exhausted me. And I had a mood to match it: grumpy and impatient. And it didn’t help knowing we had another five hours before we’d finally make it to my brother’s house.
As I was speed walking to the gate, my three-year old began to exclaim in complete and unfettered delight at the “AIRPLANEJETS!” he could see outside the huge windows. He was dancing and giggling and grinning from ear to ear to see his favorite things all in a row on the tarmac.
Joy in the Journey
I paused. And considered his mood. He’d also left 22 hours before. Granted he didn’t have the responsibilities or worries that I do as his mother, but still. He was choosing to experience joy in the journey. I needed to take a minute and just be where God had brought me instead of complaining about what came before or dreading what was up ahead.
Jesus told his disciples not to worry about what comes next because “each day has enough trouble of it’s own” (Matthew 6:34). And I really love the way Eugene Peterson translates the whole verse: “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
So, before I boarded the last flight and before I reminded myself our total travel time was going to reach 27 hours—I stopped, thanked the Lord for bringing us so far and adopted some of my son’s joy.