When I am not homeschooling two of my kids you can find me working at a pre-school in Ketchum, Idaho! One day a group of kids were sitting around a table working on a project when I noticed that one of them was looking lazily out the window with his head laying on crossed arms. When I approached the child and asked if everything was o.k. he responded to me by saying “oh yes, I just like to daydream”! It took me a moment to absorb the honesty in which this young child had responded. Most kids would have said they were fine and moved on to something productive as if they had been caught doing something wrong. But not this one! I patted him on the back and walked away to let him enjoy the rest of his daydream, because deep down I understood his desire.
I like to daydream also. I often find myself wondering about all of the “what if’s” in life. What if I won the Powerball jackpot? What if we packed up and moved to a foreign country? What if I wrote that book I have been talking about? But some of my “what if’s” really fall into the category of fear. What if my kids ski so fast they end up with a broken neck? What if my teenage driver gets in an accident? What if one of my parents gets Alzheimer’s? What if I really do write that book I have been talking about?
Sara Groves has a song tilted This Cup and she sings about our tendencies to daydream and live our lives through other people’s realities. After hearing it a few times I realized the truth it was speaking into my life.
“How many hours have I spent watching the shining t.v.
Living adventure in proxy in another person’s dream.
How many miles have I traveled looking at far away lights
listening for trains in the distance in some brilliant other life?
This cup, this cup, I wanna drink it up,
To be right here in the middle of it.
Right here, right here in this challenging reality
Is better than fear or fantasy”
In Luke chapter 22 we see Jesus share his feelings with God by asking for “this cup” to be taken from him. The cup represented the pain and suffering He would have to endure on the cross. Our lives are our “cups”! All of us have had our cups filled with pain and suffering but also with beauty and joy.
In many ways this song is a wake up call to stop avoiding what’s in our cups and to embrace the beauty, even when life is hard. Each time I hear this song I realize that I spend a good amount of my life living in this fear and fantasy. Maybe it’s time to stop daydreaming and start being more present in our own beautiful messes. Now when I catch myself drifting into the fear or fantasy, I remember Sara’s words and bring my thoughts back to reality. It is here that I ask God to show me the beauty in whatever reality is mine in that moment. I hope you can do the same.