For a recent homework assignment, I was instructed to write about the best moment of my life. Yet, it’s difficult to pinpoint one exact moment, and one exact memory, that could comfortably hold that title. Because in my twenty seven years, I’ve found that life’s richest moments are often the summation of a million little things, made perfect by their addition. They’re the moments you try to remember as you’re still living them. They’re the moments when time stands still while you continue to move- when God tugs at your heartstrings and draws you towards love, and when the line between heaven and earth gets so blissfully blurry.
Many of my favorite moments were made while living in California four years ago on a missions-type trip. I spent two months in Lake Tahoe, in the dead of summer, with roughly sixty other souls. We would work by day and learn about God by night. Some nights though, after dinner, we would sneak out of camp by starlight, to embark on an adventure. Those were the moments I lived for.
We’d flee to the parking lot and cram ten of us to each car- all elbows, and knees, and hair flying out widows. There were giggles and screams the whole way. And when our lungs burned so bad we could barely breathe, the car would hang a quick left down an old two-track road flanked by tall pines. The potholes were marvelous. If you were sitting on someone’s lap (us girls always were), you’d smash your head on the car’s ceiling at each unsightly bump. We’d meander like this for some time before emerging into a clearing with a dirt-packed lot. It was the trail head to Mt. Tallac, one of the area’s most sought-after day hikes. But, this time, we weren’t there to hike.
Instead, we’d park the cars in a loose circle and pile out; someone would tune in their car’s radio to a local country station, and we would swing dance all night. The stars would burn, barely visible through the trees; the crisp air would chill your ears and send goosebumps down your arms. Hair would twirl, and girls would spin. It was community in the wilderness, God in the night. It was laughing, and smiling, and falling. It was a million little things, made perfect by their addition. And there was seriously so much joy.
Sometimes, it’s like your body knows and reminds you in the middle: that this is a life worth remembering. That this is a life worth truly living. The little things become big things, and each moment is a gift. And of all the moments I could recall, the ones spent at Lake Tahoe were some of the best.