Blog Post by Abby McDonald
The feeling swept in with the morning rain clouds, as I sat by the window drinking coffee. Restlessness.
There were no defining edges to it. I couldn’t quite grasp where the emotion came from. It was just there. And it consumed me.
I daydreamed about moving to another town. We’d lived here four years so it was time, right? There were plenty of good reasons to migrate further south.
Like my mom’s stroke last year. Being over five hundred miles away was not ideal, and my parents weren’t getting any younger.
And I won’t even dwell on the winters here. This southern girl learned how to use a snow shovel a few years ago and purchased a new set of all-season tires, but I’d prefer not to have to use either.
Yes, I change of location was exactly what we needed. Wasn’t it? I was sure my restless ache would stop when the scenery became white sand and Palmetto trees.
But as the sun set later that evening and I watched my boys soaking up the last daylight hours, I sensed God speak.
Look for the beauty. Right here. Right now.
I saw the way the rim of the mountains slowly transformed in pink and deep blue right before nightfall. I felt the crisp evening breeze I often longed for on the sultry, humid evenings down south.
I watched the boys play and laugh with friends they’d made at church and smiled when the teacher bragged about my oldest son at a school fundraiser.
Later that week at dinner, I listened to women I’d grown to love share their kids’ latest antics and make plans for summer camping trips, trips to the pool, and marshmallow roasts.
Yes, there was beauty here. In all my restlessness and longing, I was missing it.
Sometimes instead of changing my situation, God changes me.
He wants me to see with his eyes and notice the blessings right in front of me. He is molding me and transforming me, and the some of the biggest, most life-changing transformations start with gratitude.
A full life isn’t made of moments counting down to the next major event. It is made of the moments we count our blessings.
There may come a time when God moves us closer to my family. He knows how much I miss them during their absence and how I long to savor the time I have left with them.
But he also has an assignment and a ministry for me right here, within the walls of my home and in the community around me. When we are faithful right where we are, God is honored.
He is glorified when instead of counting the days until my next trip south, I am present in the now.
“Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” James 4:14 NIV
Today, if you’re feeling restless and cannot seem to pinpoint why, I encourage you to count. But don’t count the minutes until vacation or naptime or bedtime.
Instead of counting the minutes, let’s savor the day.
Abby McDonald is a writer who can’t contain the lavish love of a God who relentlessly pursues her, even during her darkest times. When she’s not chasing her two little boys around, she loves hiking, photography, and consuming copious amounts of coffee with friends.
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