purely present

a dear old friend called me last night out of the blue.  we haven’t spoken over the phone – or seen one another’s faces – for several years now, but he always has an instantaneous way of cutting the crap and getting to my heart.  and he does so in a way that is uncomfortable, but painless – covered in grace and love and void of judgement.  

we were chatting about our current ‘stations’ and their absurdity packed full with purpose and the father’s divine provision.  i mentioned a few ‘big plan’ possibilities that require some planning and preparation.  he noted that we both have a tendency to cast our minds and hearts out onto step 7 or 8 of a 10 step plan rather than work on step 1 – here and now.  point taken.  
now, here is where the complexity of our minds and our hearts becomes a pain in the arse.  when my life is simple – community, food, work, meditation – it is so wonderfully easy for me to live here and now.  to focus on the face in front of mine and to thoroughly enjoy the work of my hands, the labor of my body.  each person’s hand and every whisper of wind or glint of sunshine becomes the face of my heavenly father there to comfort me, challenge me, impart wisdom upon me.  the funny thing is that i never stay there for long.  i always leave those places seeking out ‘my purpose’.  
i have this dream of this simple life on a farm/orphanage/communitysomethingorother somewhere in the developing world.  an open door – people there to stay, people coming and going, people living life together and openly inviting the rest of the world to join as well as moving out of our own little lives to go spend time with people who aren’t able to ‘come join’.  that is my version of a ‘house with a white picket fence’.  it’s my ideal – my version of easy, wonderful, fulfilling life.
but then i realize the gifts and interests and the resources that lie at my fingertips…and i think i might be cheating people – the rest of the people i meet in my life till the day i die – out of knowledge, services, healing, and love – that they NEED.  and i mean NEED – without them they could/would die.  i simply fight the idea of going back to school and get the training i need to get in order to do so.  
but here’s the real kicker, then.  if living in the present is where it’s at, then how exactly does one do so when there’s a longer-term plan involved.  that’s my cheif difficulty now.  how to move forward in small steps without missing deadlines, without becoming lazy.  how do you stick to step one of a ten-step plan without constantly thinking of all the things you have to do to prepare for step 2-10?  and what if you aren’t even certain that the plan is right for you?   do these questions ever cease?  i feel like i have constant just-out-of college syndrome.  what am i doing with my life?  how can i make an impact of love on the people in my life?  
staying purely present can be so easy when life is simple – and so freakishly difficult when you start to try and live it within the western model.  
here. now. inhale.
here. now. exhale.
here. now. inhale.
(my mind: shit – what if i just missed the bi-annual registration date?!)
oh dear, do i have much to learn…

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Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh and the greatness which does not bow before children.
-Kahlil Gibran

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