Just the word makes my heart beat a bit faster.
I can’t help it. It’s the way I’m wired. As a young girl, my dreams were either to be an archeologist or an astronaut. My hero? Indiana Jones.
In fifth grade, I turned what was supposed to be a five-page research paper into an encyclopedia of Egypt.
I always wanted to see the world, and after graduating from university, I finally got the chance.
Two years in Africa gave me the opportunity to explore countries and cultures. Because my job involved writing and photography, I would wake up one day and decide, “I need to go to Tanzania,” then buy a bus ticket and take off.
Life changed course when I changed continents though. I married, became a mother, and found adventure awaits everywhere.
It’s a truth I try to instruct my children and of which I often must remind myself.
Because it’s easy to forget what a grand adventure life is when you’re doing yet another load of laundry.
How can we stop being bogged down in the day-to-day and see life for the adventure it really is? And how can we teach our kids to do the same?
Adopt an Attitude of Exploration
First, adopt an attitude of exploration. Whether you’re visiting a new city or taking a nature walk in the backyard, approach everything with a desire to learn or experience something you haven’t before. You may have walked through the woods behind your house a million times, but next time, stop and look more closely. The spider’s web you just passed by is a unique work of art, and the sunset in the sky will never be quite the same again.
Look for what you can learn.
My children will quickly tell you that, as a family, we always look for opportunities to learn. If we’re visiting a new place, we seek out the history or the science or the culture. If there’s a museum or a zoo, we’re there.
Because life is an endless opportunity to learn.
When I was a kid, my friends knew the games we’d play in my backyard would include adventure. We turned digging in the dirt into excavating in Egypt and swing sets into space shuttles. Knowledge of those subjects widened our ability to imagine them and made it possible to experience far-off things without ever leaving home.
If traveling in Africa taught me anything, it’s to view detours and delays differently.
Because they happen. A lot.
And, often, it’s what happens in the waiting that makes the trip worthwhile.
New friends, unexpected experiences, time to take things in.
Whether you’re on an actual, physical journey or just the metaphorical one called life, enjoy it. Look at changes in plans as opportunities for experiences; detours as guides to things you would otherwise miss.
Your Path is Marked Out by Your Maker
Your journey is much easier when you remember that you’re not just walking through life. You’re following.
Whether you stay in one place forever or move from town to town, your journey is marked out by your Maker.
You may think you know that plan but embrace the fact that he reserves the right to change it. You do not know today what he has planned for tomorrow.
There’s an adventure in that!
That’s what keeps me watching for new friendships, wondering what He’s doing next. Knowing God works in small-town Mississippi just as often as he does in other countries, helps me notice the ways he might be working all around me.
And, for me, that turns the mundane day-to-day into a daring adventure.
Blessed are those whose strength is in you,Psalm 84:5 ESV
in whose heart are the highways to Zion.
A Little Bit More About the Mississippi Mom
Charlie White is the writer, teacher, and mother of four behind the blog MississippiMom.com. She writes to encourage women as they walk with Christ and is the founder of Merchant Ship Ministries, which exists to empower women to provide for themselves and their families through life and job skills training, economic development, and spiritual well-being. When she’s not at home in a Small-Town, Mississippi, she’s visiting her heart’s home in Kenya, working with women there.