Duncan: Maybe it doesn’t have to be perfect, but it’s everything I ever wanted


Cooking around a campfire, listening to music and just being still with the people I love.

It was a perfect moment amid an imperfect life.

I got up after assembling another shish-kebab and looked around wondering how I ever got things so twisted.

My mind has wandered back and forth lately between now and then. The present and the past.

Remember when adult life seemed like a destination? This place you would get to one day and then look around and say, “OK. I’m here! Now someone tell me what to do.”

Then someone would just hand you a paycheck and the keys to all the necessary things, like shelter and transportation. Maybe even a little book titled “Adulting 101: All the things you need to know so you don’t do anything stupid or ruin your kids for life.”

Turns out nobody bothered to tell me when I became an adult. Where is my dang diploma from getting through my early 20s without accidentally killing myself? I did a lot of dumb stuff.


It was just a slow realization that when the bills came, nobody was going to pay them if I didn’t. On top of it, if you don’t pay them, they’ll just take your stuff. They won’t even ask if it’s OK with you.

It was sudden understanding that if I didn’t feed and raise the kids, no one else would. Well, maybe the government, but that isn’t typically the goal.

Then there’s that especially weird moment when you realize Walmart plays really good music. Then you realize it’s the same oldies station they’ve always played, but somehow the 90s are now 30 years ago.

Seriously … what happened?

Where did those good old days go? Those summer nights that I could live again and again? When my future seemed as bright as the stars hanging in the sky?

Now I feel like my failures outnumber my wins.

Love seemed like a whirlwind tale rather than me pointing at him as he starts to go for a third burrito. “Nope. We are out of Gas-X.”

Then there are nights where God’s breath blows sweetly over my skin, and I move a little closer to these people He’s given me.

“Remember when you asked me for all this?” God reminded me.

I do. Oh yes, I do. All those nights running around town were in pursuit of exactly this.

My family is a discombobulated group of people who mess up, tick each other off and can’t stick to a schedule to save our lives.

I’ve found myself in recent days letting all of that go. What if my little family never really gets it all together?

Maybe my kids’ entire childhood will consist of looking for socks and wondering if today is the day Mom will go grocery shopping again.

Oh, well. Seriously. Who cares?

We are housed. We are fed. We love each other. We love our Jesus.

We have this life to lean on Him and the next one to stand before Him and thank Him for every moment of it. No matter how messy it all seemed.

It’s not perfect, friends, but it’s everything I ever wanted and way more than I ever needed.

Except that Gas-X. I probably need to go get more of that.

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