For all the infinite potential we possess, for all the countless ways we could spend the time we have on this planet, a vast majority of us spend it preparing for the future.
We do not live in the present. Everything is just a placeholder for ‘real life’. We are always waiting for things to truly begin at some point in the future. We are always depending on the future to return to us what we have invested in it, sacrificed for – our lives and our happiness.
In school, we work for years toward the last examination of our skills, even then called a ‘test’. A test for what? When does the real thing come?
Next we go to college for even more preparation. All our time and our money is dedicating to furthering our education, but not for the benefit of the now. We do it so our futures may be brighter.
Next, finally out of school and into the workforce, our debts are already deep but our hopes are high. Our futures are bright. That’s what counts, isn’t it?
For years – many more than we endured during school – we work, and we work, and we work, and we work. We start families and help them prepare to eventually reach our level, and God willing, surpass it. We want more for our children than we had. We want them to be better prepared.
In the twilight of our lives, should we make it that far, we have reached the end of working. All the years of preparation and work have been for this. Finally we are able to take a break and reap what we have sown. And still we do not live in the present. No, instead we live in the past – the past we spent thinking about this moment, this future.
Make no mistake, we enjoyed the present and made the most of it, but always our thoughts and hopes rested with tomorrow. When tomorrow came, we dismissed it as the present and continued waiting. Continued working toward the future. Now the future we had awaited for decades has arrived.
And now, only at the end of our years do we realize that all that time spent preparing for the future – all those years spent working and waiting to get ours, all those decades spent passing time until we could finally reach our goals….
That was our life. We have lived it already. It is gone.
Did you spend your time wisely, or were you counting on tomorrow to bring you happiness? Are you still? On your deathbed, as your curtain closes and you bow off the stage, will you be satisfied with the climax of your play? Or will it all have been a buildup to a finish that never came?
I guess what I’m trying to say with all of this is, if you died tomorrow, would your last day on earth have been a waste?