Are you prepared to be unprepared?

I was recently listening to an interview with Seth Godin who was reflecting that most memorable moments, the most important moments of life are the one’s we are unprepared for.

Think about that for a moment.

Were you prepared for your wedding day?
Were you prepared for the moment you held your child for the first time?
Were you truly prepared for the day you saw your dream become a reality?
Can you rehearse the moments of life that become the most meaningful?

If we are honest, some of the greatest things in our lives are things we could never prepare for.  Seth went on to claim that our obsession with preparation has gone too far.  Our need to be prepared has ventured too far into the realm where we are just naturally unprepared.  We don’t risk because we fear we are unprepared.  Is it possible to allow being unprepared to be a good thing?

“Parenting is always frontier.”

John Elderedge

In parenting, we are not always sure what is coming our way.  We don’t know what’s around the corner.  You get through the terrible two’s and there is the next phase waiting for you.  You are always on the border of something else.

So how do you prepare for life’s big moments?

Our only real option is to step fully into whatever life presents us.  To be in that moment.  Our preparation is who we are and who we are becoming.  Our preparation is everything life has taught us up to this point.  Our goal in these moments is to just get out of the way and be present.


Next week, I will be sharing some principles from Orange that I’ve found very helpful to think through.  The basic idea stems from a number and a scripture.

From the time a child is born you have approximately 936 weeks until they graduate.

To the point above, do you really think you can use those 936 weeks to TRULY prepare for the moment your son or daughter leaves your house…doubtful.

“Teach us to number our days, so that we may gain a heart of wisdom”  Ps. 90:12

Based on these two things, Orange has identified 6 things that we can do over time to influence the life and faith of our kids.  Here’s the thing:  you have time.  Time from now until then.  Time to influence your child to become the person that can step fully into the unprepared moments of life, trust the God who brought them to this moment, and be present for whatever comes next.

Are you prepared to be unprepared?