My husband loves to watch the TV show, American Pickers. It’s funny to me because when we first married, he hated antiques while I loved to contemplate their untold secrets. Yesterday, Mike and Frank, the two pickers, went to visit a pastor who they were told, had some old things he was ready to part with. After asking about the price of several items, it became obvious he wasn’t quite so ready to let them go. His line got my interest as I was half paying attention. “It seems I have a hard time letting things go,” he said, and my ears immediately perked up. Sounds like a lot of folks I know, myself included.
It may not be antiques or belongings we have trouble letting go of. More often, its those deeply personal things like relationships, unrealized hopes, shattered dreams… Sometimes it seems as though the reality of day to day living versus that which we’ve hoped and longed for is a deep, dark abyss that can’t be bridged. Thus far in my years of living, I’ve not yet met a person who had every hope, dream, or desire fulfilled, or one whose life turned out exactly as they had planned.
I’m finding that the older I get, the heavier those unfulfilled longings become and the more energy it takes to continue to hold on to them. Sometimes we need to ask ourselves, why are we afraid to let them go? What is the worst that could possibly happen after all? We would be lighter, have more energy for each day, and look forward to new and better things that await us. Maybe our fear is looking like or acknowledging that we failed in some ways. Well, I’m pretty certain we ALL have fallen short in many ways we may or may not recognize or acknowledge. Failure only occurs when you quit. Making mistakes is how we learn.
As Graham Cooke would say, we need to get over ourselves and get on with the business of living. Living in the past is futile, so let go of what weighs you down and look up with new eyes and new hope to the One who makes all things new. Grieve the loss if you need to, and move on towards new life. This world and all that is in it is quickly passing away. Only Jesus can give us a life of true satisfaction and the fulfillment of every longing.