Throughout the past few years – probably beginning my freshman year of college – I have felt loss in my life be at a level that is beyond a tangible control. Throughout this year I have felt that same feeling. Not necessarily loss of life, but just loss of the elements that make up life – plans, schedules, dreams, all of it. The other day I posed the question to Ron, “Do you think that God takes things out of our equation when we start to rely on them too heavily? When we start to idolize – does he eliminate?”
I never hesitate to create a theological conversation with my husband. When it comes to the Bible and real estate, his knowledge is deep and insightful. That Christian Education degree is going to be put to work. He paused before answering, something he does often. I’m unsure if he wants to make certain he has the right words or if he’s asking the Lord for them, but it’s a trait he got from his father. When he does it I can almost smell the long pull on the tobacco pipe from Senior.
“No.” He replied solidly, then continued. “I don’t think that God takes from us. I think that he allows life to happen, and when it does we realize how much we need Him.”
I had never thought about it that way, but he was absolutely right. It was never promised that we wouldn’t suffer, but it was that He will be with us when we do.
This year, if it has taught me anything, has said loud and clear that “your plans Do. Not. Matter.” It doesn’t matter how hard you’ve worked, what you’ve suffered, nor how bad you want them. His plan will always be greater, and not on your time table.
If I were a Friends character, I am Monica Geller through and through. My back-up plan has a back-up plan and it’s color coded and laminated with the alarm set five minutes before. This year I’ve had to throw my highlighters out the window and learn to just sit. Just sit, and be okay with it.
I’ve heard that it’s okay to not be okay, but it’s not okay to stay that way. God has made me be comfortable in that ‘not okay’ waiting game. I’ve been sitting with my own thoughts, and learning the hard way to calm myself when all I want to do is panic. Patience has been the virtue of the year, and I’m mentally de-cluttering more and more every day. I’ve felt often that the world is moving quickly around me as I sit in my own stillness. A comfort has slowly but graciously come along with that.
For 2017, simplicity is how we will roll, letting God steer us in whichever direction and knowing that failure is just His way of telling us to turn around. I’ll stand around with just my backpack, and wait for you to say jump. With less stuff weighing me down, it’s easier to ask, “how high?”