My Life/Teen Life

A Case for a Mediocre Life

How long do trends last? As I scroll through social media more than usual during this time at home, it seems like there is always a new trend. First, we had the voice-over trends, then the dancing trends, even the pranking family members and friends trends. These trends seem to become a new “normal” of our lives so quickly now. Since the rise of TikTok it seems like all families, including older generations, know that if anyone in your house is dancing weirdly near you, you are most likely going to end up on the internet at some point.

Though there’s a huge diversity of trends and one of the biggest overarching themes that seems to have been around for many years now is #LivingMyBestLife. As the hashtag itself states, the idea is simple — how do you display what your “best” life would look like? Maybe some nice beach, the perfect sunset, the biggest indulgence, the best cars, the newest tech. Naturally, we want to succeed in life, we want to be better at enjoying what we have, but what does it truly mean to live your best life?

In my curiosity, I turned to Scripture to find some nice Bible verse that I could “make hip” and interchangeably use it to describe Jesus’ best life. I guess one could say “On the next day, when the great crowd that had come to the feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, they took palm branches and went out to meet him, and cried out: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord” (John 12) would be a great Palm Sunday Instagram caption to end with #LivingMyBestLife. Rightly so, the King of Kings coming into Jerusalem riding on a donkey, while his disciples tried to do some crowd control because everybody wanted to meet Jesus the Nazarean who had performed all these miracles? That’s definitely a #JesusLivingHisBestLife moment.

However, Jesus knew from the very beginning that His life had meaning beyond His understanding. He knew that to embrace His best life meant that He had to humble himself to become man like you and me, to be born of a humble woman, to be a part of a humble family, to live a humble life as the son of a carpenter; He knew that living His best life meant embracing the simplicity of it. Jesus was never for the flashiness of certain moments, He simply embraced the little moments and rejoiced in them.

So does this mean we can’t keep using this awesome hashtag? Of course not. But it is a great reminder that our focus is not on our material life, as a matter of fact, our focus is not even on this life but the next. As we try to follow in the example of Jesus, He reminds us that a simple life is the best life. This idea of living our best life constantly, given that social media dramatically magnifies the “perfect moments” of people’s lives and rarely ever seems to focus on the bad side, is futile. Every human being knows that life is not just about the great moments. Yes, those great vacations and moments where we feel at our best physically, mentally, or spiritually are amazing, but we know the reality is life has great moments and has bad ones too. And that is part of life. If anything, we can learn so much about ourselves from the bad moments, that sometimes we may need those moments for some perspective. The bottom line is that living our best life should not be focused on the visible things or experiences, but rather on the fruit that leads to eternal life.

The best life we can ever live is a life that leads us and those we love to Heaven, to rejoice with our Creator, and be in awe of His presence. Christ had no expectation of grandeur when He became human for our salvation, all He hoped for was to teach us how to love one another and to bring us home with Him and the Father. That Man, living his best life entering Jerusalem on a donkey, that very Man knew that what laid ahead was not His will but the Father’s. He had no control over it yet He trusted and humbly accepted. That same Jesus is the one that “humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross (Phil 2:8) for you and I. That was Him living His best life. A life full of misunderstanding and anger towards Him, a life with betrayal and lack of love, a life of suffering and dying to oneself, a mediocre life, yet a life worth living because of His love for us.

Jesus is the perfect example of #LivingMyBestLife. Not because He always got to enjoy an easy life, but rather because He made the most out of His circumstances. He found simplicity in His everyday life and embraced it, focusing not on what He would get out of it, but on what would benefit others the most. Every step towards the cross for Him, meant a step closer to Heaven for those He loved most. That is the mediocre life we should all aim to post about.

About the Author

Juan Aznaran

I think one of toughest things in life is being sarcastic and Catholic, so I am still trying to find the perfect balance. I am a die-hard Patriots fan despite people’s nice comments. I’m either listening to music, playing video games, hanging out with friends, playing with my puppy (Loki), watching New Girl or Friends, or all of the above. I have not figured out exactly what it means to be a man of God, but I have learned that real men do not stand, they kneel.

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