Yesterday I saw my son and daughter in law’s professional wedding pictures for the first time. They were shot as glimpses — clasped hands, a stolen kiss, a playful moment – in an effort to not only capture the event, but the emotions evoked by the moments.
We all want to hold onto the moments. You see it every day on the social media. It’s as if, in our posts and selfies and Instagrams and tweets, we’re proving our significance, that our days have meaning, that we’re not just spinning our wheels here on earth.
Because we feel time slipping so quickly through our fingers. And there’s this lurking fear that this is all we have.
I read a passage from “Gifts from the Sea” by Anne Morrow Lindbergh that states what so many people feel. Lindbergh writes that we all want to be “loved alone,” to be the “one and only” in someone’s life. But, she soberly reminds us, “there is no one and only, there are only one and only moments.”
Ecclesiastes seems to say the same thing. Solomon wrote, “He (God) has made everything beautiful in its time.” (Ecc 3:11) That describes so perfectly the melancholy we feel in the transience of our poignant experiences.
Ecclesiastes goes on to say, “He has set eternity in the hearts of man.” We are created to long for something that will last. And Solomon wrote in Proverbs, “What a person desires is unfailing love.” (Prov 19:22)
The amazing thing is that God doesn’t leave us bereft in our longing. In glorious, heart-warming prose He asserts that we are ALWAYS the one and only in His eyes —
And I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love and in mercy. Hos 2:19
I will recount the steadfast love of the LORD, the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD has granted us, and the great goodness to the house of Israel that he has granted them according to his compassion, according to the abundance of his steadfast love. Isa 63:7
“Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you. Isa 54:10
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39
God’s love is constant. It isn’t like snapshots or video clips. It’s one long continuous take. We don’t have to feel anxious, like we’re not enough, like we somehow have to hold onto the moments as proof that our life is meaningful. God’s steadfast love illuminates our moments and makes them extraordinary ones.
Here are some moments from my day. Some of them felt good. Some felt flat. All of them feel better when I remember God’s love.
Somehow, I believe that our connection with Him connects our moments and gives them meaning. They become a part of His pattern, the beautiful design He is weaving through space and time. They each somehow seem almost as special as the moments from the wedding.
Every day we can chronicle our lives anew, just like this, and feel like our mundane doings are part of something graceful and significant.