If I’m trying to focus on something, I don’t like being interrupted. And if I have a route planned out, I don’t like being forced to take a detour. At times, I’ve found it easy to have the same response to life’s unexpected turns.
When difficult or unexpected times come, I can view them as interruptions, as detours. And I can be in a hurry to get through them so I can get back to life as planned. But these moments, these seasons, though not planned, are not interruptions taking me away from life—they’re some of the things that make up life.
In a letter to a friend, C. S. Lewis made the following comment:
The great thing, if one can, is to stop regarding all the unpleasant things as interruptions of one’s…‘real’ life. The truth is of course that what one calls the interruptions are precisely one’s real life—the life God is sending one day by day…1
Our life includes everything we experience, regardless of whether it was pleasant or planned. But we can be so caught up in chasing after what we think life should be like, that we miss out on being present in the one life we actually have.
Letter to Arthur Greeves, 20 December 1943, in The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Volume II ↩︎