Recently Nancy and I were talking about a man we know that appears be going through a mid-life crisis. Somewhat jokingly I said I was past my mid-life crisis. Nancy asked what my crisis had been (no motorcycle, sports car, or mistress being in evidence). Not being prepared for this question I flippantly replied that my mid-life crisis had been one of "existential despair". In retrospect, I think that was the truth. God has stripped away many of the world oriented things that I wanted to achieve in my life: to be a high level manager, be a rich investor, be a published writer. I still fantasize about being the scientific wizard, but that is pretty ridiculous. The bottom line, which has not been easy for me to find and accept is that I live in the moment to obey God's Will and His Word.
While I think it is certainly important to have plans and directions in our lives, fundamentally our lives should come down to these three things: loving God, doing justice, and walking humbly before the Lord (Micah 6:8). None of these things can be done "out of the moment"--they are intended to be the present tense attributes of our lives. The state of our existence can change (or end) in an instant. For us to pretend and/or expect that life will have a steady course or state (e.g. to be "happy") seems naive and inconsistent with God's calling and promises for us. Life is a sequence of choices--and there is always a best way. Jesus is the way, and he cannot be reduced to a formula, or a list of rules. He guides us everyday to choose good -- we "only" have to obey.