One of the hardest things about this book tour is trying to find the balance of being present in the moment and taking full advantage of this opportunity. I want to shoot as many photos as possible and document as much as I can, but I also want to make sure I’m appreciating each moment, not just trying to document it. And as the tour goes on I find myself wishing time would somehow slow down. This trip has been the fulfillment of a deep and long sought after desire and I find it is already steadily running its course. I can’t believe I’ve been on the road for two months already, it seems like it’s only been a few weeks. I already miss camping in the Pacific Northwest and reading by firelight in the Tetons. I miss the family of friends I’ve been blessed with in North Carolina, but I’m looking forward to seeing old friends throughout the East Coast. I’m praying there will be a wave big enough to surf on the Gulf Coast to complete my goal of surfing the four coastlines of the continental US on this trip, and I’m looking forward to camping along the Grand Canyon. Even with so much to look forward to though, I still find myself wrestling with the bittersweet reality of life—that the good seasons are destined to pass. This doesn’t mean that once a good season has ended we are going to experience a season of trial or hardship, but it does mean that in this life we have to come to terms with time itself. Time is, in my opinion, “a severe mercy.” Whatever season we are experiencing in this life, it is by the very nature of time a fleeting moment in a lifetime of moments. So it is with this trip; as beautiful and reviving as it has been, it will shortly come to an end.
So what are we to do with this condition? Do we go through life in a pessimistic state of mind or perpetually looking for the negatives in each season? Do we live as “Debbie Downers?” Do we frantically and selfishly try to indulge ourselves in every passing desire we might have? Do we become infatuated with simply pleasing ourselves?
I don’t think any of these are the answer. I think we are simply meant to enjoy the journey, to learn to take life’s many seasons with the consciousness that there is much to be learned in each one; but at the same time to realize that our ultimate peace and fulfillment isn’t found in our circumstances but rather in the presence of Jesus. I’m still in the progress of learning this.