The other night I prayed for my friend. She needed it. She’s tired and burnt out, struggling in a painful in-between place of leaving an old life she loved and not quite making peace with the new one. She craved a fresh wind of inspiration.
I prayed for rejuvenation, and I started to pray God would fill her days with purpose, but it felt wrong. So I stopped. Was that even a fair prayer to pray?
Some days our lives don’t feel full of purpose, do they? It feels like we are probably doing something wrong. It’s easy to feel as though the mundane, the ordinary, the repetitive motions of daily life are without meaning. It doesn’t mean they are, but it feels that way.
I am a meaning junkie. I want everything I do to be drenched in rich, transcendent significance. Every day, all the time. I want to be aware that all the breaths and grocery runs and stoplights and skinned knees and hugs for sad people all mean something enormous and eternal.
But usually, I am just going through the motions. Missing everything.
Sometimes it’s just not possible to feel the depth and purpose in our days. Some of the crap we go through feels totally obnoxious and unreasonable. And it is. Somewhere on the spectrum from mildly annoying to extremely unjust, and we’re not going to locate the meaning in it all right then. We just have to hunker down and survive it.
So if there’s no purpose to be felt, what can we do? We can at least look for an ever-present, never-leaving God and find him.
So that’s what I prayed.
I prayed for my friend to get her mojo back, and even if she can’t feel the purpose in every moment, that she would look for and experience the weight and presence of God’s Spirit. One who loves thick, heavy and unconditional. One who can sneak past our guards on the worst days when we kind of hate everyone. Or when we’re just bored with life.
They faithfully, gently come to bring their atmosphere-shifting peace and remind us that our lives are significant because of who we are, not all the other stuff. We will survive this together, and that is enough meaning for one day.