Complete the sentence: “My life will really begin when I______________.”

Here are some answers I’ve heard people say: “marry that special person”, “pass my exams”, “get that dream job”, “win ITV’s Love Island”. The last one was to check you were paying attention 😉

Many believers put life on hold until some future event happens and miss the importance of what God’s doing now.

We can become so focused on a particular destination, being married for example, that we stop valuing life’s journey, even to the point of taking any route to get this desired destination, compromising on someone’s spiritual suitability, for example, to beat the biological countdown clock that’s ticking ever louder.

It’s not easy. We live in the shadow of the fall. Sometimes the longings we have will go unanswered in this life – to be fulfilled in eternity. As much as I wish it was true, and far be it from me to disagree with the marvellous cbeebies Topsy and Tim theme song (yes, I am a fan), we can’t all be anything if we close our eyes and dream.

But we can find joy in being who we were made to be, embracing the here and now moment by moment faithfulness to the opportunities God gives each of us.

This was brought to life for me recently as I was reading a fantastic book called The Rest of God by Mark Buchanan.

“Mr Holland’s Opus is the story of a man with a magnificent ambition. He wants to be a great composer. But he still has to pay the bills, so he and his young wife move to a small town where he teaches high school music, strictly for the money. All the while, he works on his masterpiece, his opus, laying the ground for his real calling. The plan is to teach for a few years, then step into his destiny.

But life keeps intruding. One year folds into two, into five, into fifteen. And then one day, Mr Holland is old, and the school board shuffles him out for early retirement. He packs his desk. His wife and son come to fetch him. Walking down the school’s wide, empty hallways, he hears a sound in the auditorium. He goes to see what it is.

It’s a surprise.

Hundreds of his students from his years of teaching – many now old themselves – dozens of his colleagues, both current and former, hundreds of friends, fans, well-wishers, the room is packed. All have gathered to say thank you. An orchestra is there, made up of Mr Holland’s students through the years. They’ve been preparing to perform Mr Holland’s opus – the compositions that, over four decades, he hammered out and tinkered with, polished, discarded, recovered, reworked, never finished.

They play it now.

But, of course, he knows, everyone knows: his opus isn’t the composition. His real opus, his true life’s masterpiece, stands before him, here, now. It’s not the music. It is all these lives – men and women, young and old – his life has touched. It is all these people his passions and convictions have helped and shaped… This is his work. This is his purpose.”

Don’t put your life on hold. Live. Be faithful in whatever God puts before you, moment by moment, day by day, week by week, year by year. And maybe you’ll reach the destination of your dreams, or maybe you’ll discover something better, your true purpose…Christ-likeness…and a legacy beyond your wildest dreams.