Engaged. Pregnant. Packed, but not moved. Accepted into college, yet still at home.
So many of life’s stages and moments are caught in a mid-pendulum swing – moving in the right direction, but not quite arrived.
In my circles, engagement is popular these days. I remember clearly what it was like to have one ring on my left ring finger, but one still missing. I was madly in love and fully committed. But I wasn’t fully entered into marriage.
Pregnancy was similar. I was growing a child like a vine grows a watermelon. I made decisions on his behalf. I was his mother. But I wasn’t fully entered into motherhood.
And these types of moments repeat themselves endlessly. Packing the whole house, but still having a few days before the move. Expecting to leave for camp in two weeks, but still needing to finish finals. Waiting for vacation to arrive, but still working. Lots of life is this or that, but even more of it is simultaneously one foot in this, one in that.
Already, but not yet.
I was in a large lecture hall at Gordon College the first time I heard the phrase. It drastically changed my faith.
Most of the time, I find already, not yet tension irritating. It’s too gray. Too messy. Too tense. Too confusing. I just want to arrive already.
But these in between times are a minute replica of faith. God’s kingdom is already here, but not fully realized. I’m already a Christian, but not finished working out my faith.
It’s tempting to exasperatedly cry out, “Are we there yet?”. But in the in between there’s beauty – beauty enhanced by the yearning and striving for the end. Beauty in being content with the already.