It’s often a challenge to reconcile the unresolved parts of our lives while we’re still working through them. Steve Jobs once said, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward. You can only connect them looking backwards.”
Life, in all its messy and glorious uncertainty, is full of road bumps so big they shake us to our core. Dreams slip through our fingertips, no matter how desperately we struggle to hold on. We lose our way at the eleventh hour. We’re forced to take the scenic route through hazardous conditions and uncertain terrain. People betray us. We betray ourselves. We don’t always get what we want. And sometimes when we do, the rug gets pulled out from under us anyway.
So what do we do? How do we find the story in our struggle, even when we’re in its grip?
We look backwards.
We trace our way back through the intricate constellation of our lives with its many interconnected points of light and ask ourselves: Was there ever a time when these dots seemed like nothing more than disparate plot points? Is there any way we could have imagined how they would end up connecting in this particular way? And now, looking back, are we able to identify hints of meaning in what once felt like nothing more than madness?
Today, let’s make room for the possibility that the very same force that was at work in our lives back then is also at work in our lives right now.
Let’s stop burning precious energy trying to connect the dots, because they are already connected.
Let’s stop spinning our wheels, struggling to find our path, because we’re already on it.
And let’s keep putting one foot in front of the other, confronting today’s uncertainty with with the knowledge that our lives have always been unfolding as they should.
Because the road really has been beneath our feet all along. We’ve only got to believe it to see it.