While my family and I were recently on a flight to New York, I was seated next to an older gentleman. As we introduced ourselves, we discussed what was taking us to the Big Apple. I said we were going to visit family and friends. Then, he shared that he was going to attend his mother’s homegoing service.
Immediately I expressed my condolences and he shared that his mother lived a long life. He knew with confidence that she was with our Father. While he was somber, peace exuded from this man.
Then, he shared some sage advice with me. He looked over at my children and said, “Take them to see the sights. Enjoy this time as a family.” He cheerfully reminisced about the spots he frequented as a kid growing up in New York City. His words were simple, but the impact was powerful.
Typically our trips home are spent visiting our loved ones, which we treasure deeply. When our children ask if we can visit the sights they hear so much about, often our response is that our schedule is fully booked and maybe we’ll get to those next time. Sadly this is the same conversation we have every single time we visit.
I began to think about the instances in my life when I’ve said,
“When the kids are older, my husband and I will go on dates.”
“When the kids are healthy, we can celebrate our anniversary in style.”
“When the kids graduate from high school, I’ll write a book.”
You get the idea. I have a habit of putting off what I wish for until a later time. And each of my reasons are justifiable.. well, in my mind anyway:
“My children are too young to be left with others.”
“I can’t burden friends/family should my child become ill while I’m away.”
“I don’t have the time to write now.”
A dear friend told me years ago that as we keep delaying what our heart desires, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” (Proverbs 13:12)
Those words resonated so strongly in my heart. The time had come to make some changes in our itinerary and quit delaying our children’s desires. So this trip is not limited to just visits, but we’re going to be tourists in our home state! And our kids are happy beyond words about the sights they’ll finally be able to see and experience.
What do you keep delaying? Don’t allow your heart to grow sick, but do what you can to make your wishes become a reality today because it will be refreshing for your soul. Dr. Henry Morris states, “… fulfilled hope, like true wisdom and righteousness, is so vitalizing as to be a source of renewed vigorous life.”