Not The Thing

I used to think that I had to find The Thing and then I would be Happy. You know the Thing? That something that somehow if I worked out what it was and did it, everything would make sense. Everything would be worthwhile. The obstacles would be as nothing. I just needed to look around me and within me and find the Thing and a way to do the Thing and then my heart would be overwhelmed with a peace and contentment that the grittiest of reality could not remove.

I wrapped up The Thing in words and faith. I called it purpose and said that God would be Happy with me if I fulfilled my purpose. God happy with me, me happy with God. It all made such perfect sense. And problems weren’t problems but pointers to my purpose.

I fell for the performance version. Find the Thing you have to do. I bought the guilt trip. You need to do the Thing because if you don’t do the Thing how will somebody else do their thing?

And so many times I thought I had found the Thing. So many times people told me I was wrong. So many times I was afraid that I had found the Thing and dropped it, or passed it by, or given it away.

And then I found something else that was better than the Thing could ever be.


If that’s all I ever do – love wherever, whenever, however I can – I think I will have done something good. Something noble and praiseworthy. Something to be proud of.

Because maybe purpose isn’t a Thing but a flavour. Like oil that sticks to your fingers and then spreads to whatever you touch.

So I don’t look for the Thing anymore. I don’t tell other people to find their Thing either. I just say is there a way that we can do love better?

Whoever, wherever, whenever and however we are.



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