He rolled his eyes when I clicked the scanner on it. Blissfully in love, we were registering for items for our wedding. Dan was realistic. “Babe, what is that?”
“It's a turkey platter, we WILL need this someday.” I said emphatically, smiling back.
“It's obscenely huge. We are not going to use that thing, and where will we put it in our little apartment?”
“We will find a place. Plus you're going to be happy someday that I won't have to spend $50 on a turkey platter when we need one.”
Eventually we ended the conversation and moved onto scanning towels and tools, adding them to our wish list. It was ten years ago and around Christmastime this year, we moved that turkey platter a ninth time…
I have used it once. For veggies… at a Super Bowl Party. Not even for a turkey!
Each time we moved, Dan suggested we get rid of it. He's right, it's obscenely huge and we’ve only used it once.
Every time I open the cupboard it’s kept in, I think about it. I think about using it. And then I justify it, someday, we’ll be glad we have this.
And I'm sure we will…right?
On some level moving this turkey platter feels like parts of my past life, where I would collect things I would do someday, read someday, be someday.
I would tell myself someday, when I have it all together, I'll have something to contribute to another’s life.
Someday, when I have the time I'll become a writer.
Someday when I don't have school work, then I'll be more present to my life.
Someday, when the relational complexities go away, then I'll be able to be a good friend to that person.
Someday, when we get our life in order, we’ll be able to reach to others different than us.
But just like I kept telling myself someday, I’d use the turkey platter, and then didn’t.
The somedays in our lives don't ever become a reality without intention and planning.
I hadn't used the turkey platter because I haven't gone out and gotten a turkey to roast, or thrown a party large enough to put food on it. I didn't give to a particular friendship because I wasn't intentional about making the strides to pursue reconciliation in it. I didn't write because I waiting for the perfect time to become a writer. I didn't believe that an incomplete person is a more powerful mentor than someone living with the façade of perfection, and so I waited until I would be in a more perfect place.
I waited and waited and missed opportunities. I waited and waited and missed finding myself in deeper ways. I waited and waited and missed out on the blessing of opening myself to a different way of life.
Someday Won’t Come by Waiting
But that's the thing, the someday is a myth. Someday is all smoke-screens.
And the myth that someday you’ll really start living, is holding you back from the life God is calling you to.
The someday won't become a reality until you're intentional about taking small steps to make it happen.
If you’re anything like me, then know this, you aren’t alone. Even the people of Israel struggled with the myth of the someday. In the book of Jeremiah, the people tell God that someday, they would make a life for themselves, when they were back in their original place, their beloved Israel. For certainly, they couldn’t make a life in exile. They told God that someday they would put down roots again, but not until God put them back into their glory days.
And God in his wisdom responds by saying, hmmm… Someday is a myth.
Today, I have things for you to do, and ways for you to be a community.
Plant crops where you are, you're going to need something to eat. Marry your sons and daughters off, for they need to start new families who bring up their children to know me.
I have things for you TO-Day that you wouldn't believe. Ways that I will show up, but you can’t be too focused on the ‘someday’ or you’ll miss me in your midst!
In the book of Jeremiah God calls the people to put down roots right where they are. Not waiting until they find a better place, or are in a different place.
This calling from God to the people of Israel is a call to believe that God is working in the moment, now.
It’s a call to believe that God isn't just going to meet his people in a far-off place, different than where they are now. God’s provision in their lives would be more than enough for them today as they would need.
For TODAY, and not just for someday.
Discard the Myth of Someday
The writer of Hebrews echoes Jeremiah’s words when he says, “Today if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion…”
And that's the call for us too. Discard the myth of the someday. God is calling us to put down roots too. Listen for his voice today. God is calling us to live now, today, this week, in the light of God’s provision and protection over our lives. Not worrying about the future will bring or waiting until things are different to act.
Maybe you’ve been waiting for healing, to really become active in serving others. Today you can pursue healing, and not just someday. Today you can pour into another, in your incompleteness and imperfection. Walking with someone who knows they are imperfect is much more powerful than someone who thinks they have it all together.
Maybe you're waiting to pursue a passion you have until you're in a different life situation- when the kids are older, when you retire, when work slows down. It won't happen until you take small steps to pursue it. Block out a Saturday morning. Get a sitter. Plan it. Put 15 minutes a day towards this desire. God may use your passion for his kingdom, today, this week, this year. But he cannot use it until you take the steps to intentionally start.
Maybe you're waiting until your have a bigger space to host people and build community. Maybe you’ve spent too many evenings alone, wishing it was different. Pick up the phone and invite someone over. God can work just fine through a pizza box and a cramped living room. Humility and openness in life are all the ingredients you need to start building into relationships.
You can keep waiting until the perfect time, but the perfect time may not come and you will have missed out on the goodness of God working through your willing and imperfect life. You can keep waiting, but you may end up doing just that. Waiting, and waiting and waiting.
Today you have been given the gift of NOW. Take the leap, take a small step, but start somewhere, today. Make your some-day, to-day.
If you're longing to find meaning in the midst of the mundane in your own life, I have a gift written just for you. My e- book called Jesus and Spit: Seeing the Miracle in the Mundane is yours FREE when you sign up here. Join me on this journey to discover the miracles God has in your ordinary life!