Traveling down this road of life, one question continually comes to my mind, “Are we there yet?”

As I walk my life, I’ve tend to notice just how crabby we all have become. We don’t have enough to eat. I need more water? I need a bigger home! I/We want to belong? I need to forge an identity. Simply put, most are never really satisfied.  We complain we want good grades, but then complain about the work necessary to get them. We prayerfully declare to needing mercy or freedom from the pain of an injury and then ‘Bitch’ how hard the physical therapy is, and God, look at all these treatments.

Lord, give me a partner in life, that I may not walk alone. Then the relationship becomes a ton of work and then the heartache and the calls to vulnerability go ignored, finally wishing the relationship away. We work for political parties. We work for church organizations. We work for our careers, family, degrees, homes … and all along the way we suffer so much disappointment and setbacks.

As a Buddhist, the thing I see most is the illusion that a ‘Promised Land’ exists out there somewhere and the journey to said ‘Promised Land’ should be easier than this. That is should be so much, much easier to get there.

We tend to neglect the fact that Buddha, Christ and other leaders repeatedly stated we will suffer and the journey itself will be hard. Still, many look to religion to make the journey easier versus looking for love and satisfaction. There is no quick fix or comfort food. I believe God simplistically states, “I will not make everything easy. I will not fulfill your every need.” He knows there is something about the human life that is forged only via life’s twists and turns. It’s called ‘character’ and ‘values.’ And This forging allows us to become our own best selves.

What religion does promise is that faith will give us daily bread. Deep down, we will get what’s truly needed along the way. We are often promised to have the blessings only that which is required. But we often keep looking for things ‘out there’ and not the life found from within.  It’s not a simple matter. It’s about focus: we can choose to see the blessings. We have to learn to see that the ‘journey’ in itself is the ‘thing.’

These days in our lives are such a mixture of disappointments, heartache, healing, laughter, love, simple moments and loss. I mean, this is it. And at times, life simply sucks. No doubt about it.

But life does not start when we get to the ‘Promised Land.’ When you get there, it’s just another journey, another set of choices, disappointments and travels. It can’t be about just getting to the finish line. Think about it, so many have sacrificed for the ‘Promised Land’ and never made. Their journey was cut short by death, bad choices, and twists of fate. In this life, the victory lane and finish line don’t come to us all.

Thus, each of us must find something now. You must learn that your life matters now. And that being in the moment of living, our life does not begin nor end by standing on the victor’s platform.

For some, the dream will keep them going. But for most, it’s about the challenge in our life: the daily struggle, the willingness to be open to love, the commitment to being faithful to our values, our teaching, our loved ones, in being our best selves each and every day.

If we aren’t careful, we’ll get so entangled in the whine of life that we’ll forget the ‘daily bread’ given unto us. Live in the moment. Understand your blessings. Live in Peace.