I've recently discovered that life surprises you sometimes. I've never met anyone whose life has gone exactly to plan. I've never had anyone tell me "Yep, my life has been as average as anyone's, and as predictable as a fairy tale."
Our lives twist and turn. They begin, and then, sometimes very abruptly, they end. They may seem to stand still for years at a time and then, all of a sudden, turmoil strikes. Injury. Cancer. Death. Floods. Earthquakes. Unemployment. Bankruptcy. Divorce. Sometimes, though, it just gets interesting. Graduation. Marriage. School. Job offers. Birth. Moving.
It's a giant story- one that is different for each of us. It will hold many different seasons, in many different places. I discovered that, today. I discovered that sometimes life hits you right in the chest and you go flying backwards, unable to figure out what's going on. It's hard to find your balance, and it's hard to make sense of it all, but one thing is for certain: God's holding me. Tightly.
He's my seat belt as the vehicle of my life is careening around corners, flying down gravel roads, and leaning precariously over the edge. He's the one driving, and I'm the one in the passenger seat. I get to look out the window and watch whatever He chooses to drive me by. That's my job. That's my position. But man, I am a backseat driver if there ever was one.
I like to push him out, and squeeze into that driver's seat. I prefer to steer. I focus on the road immediately ahead, making sure I get to every stop and take all the right paths. I have a single destination in mind, and I have faith that I can make it there. However, my timing, my sense of direction, and my driving skills just don't cut it. Along the way, I miss the important stops. I miss the big picture. I miss all the pit stops, the landmarks, the missions, and the opportunities for adventure that God had in mind for me, because I was on my own schedule. I may get to where I wanted to be... but it will disappoint when compared to the perfect trip God had planned for me. With me at the wheel, nothing could never add up to what God has in mind. He sees the big plan and, when He drives the car, the trip is worth every second.
I'm not sure what He's planning for me, but right now, things are a whirlwind. I've been struck with a sense of obligation, and have been starting to understand how short life is. We're here, there, everywhere... and then we're gone. Seeing how fast my family can be called somewhere else- seeing how suddenly I may have to live on my own... it scares me. What else could happen in just the blink of an eye?
I want to know what my job is right here, and right now. In the little jobs, in the little things- I want to know what God expects of me as a student. Teacher. Employee. Friend. Sister. Daughter. Leader. Writer. Dancer. Musician. What is my place? What is my job? In this tiny town, in this tiny school- what is my purpose? Life can change quicker than we'd like to think... and I don't want to miss my opportunity to fulfill my purpose. Who knows when God will decide it's time for me to get back in the car, so that He can drive me away somewhere else? Bible school, college, university, missions trips, a new home, a new job... my time is limited. I'm trying to go with His flow, but I don't know His thoughts. I don't know His timing. So while I'm here, I will not waste my time.
Whatever season of life you are in right now, look around. Instead of focusing on what's up ahead, look on your passenger window. God took you this way for a reason. He has something to show you. He has some stops he wants you to make. He has a plan. An idea. A story. Your story. His story. He's writing it, and you're living it.
Check out what on earth He could be calling you to right at this second. Sending an encouraging email? Phoning up someone who's going through a hard time? Be attentive to His desires for you. They are beautiful, and worth giving every thing you've got. Look out the window and just enjoy. Be watching for those moments that God is driving you by. He's doing it on purpose. Nothing you see is an accident. Allow God to control the vehicle. Let HIM be the one to guide your path. Don't stress about it- He's got it! So go along for the ride, and allow Him to turn your life into an extraordinary adventure!
1 Peter 5:7~
Give all your worries and cares to God,
for he cares for you.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled
and do not be afraid.
If the captain of the universe is driving your vehicle, you have no need to fear crashing. So sit back, keep your eyes open, and watch as He shows you His marvelous plans for your life. Whatever He asks you to do, remember that He's driving the car. It's your turn to trust. Obey. And be amazed.
And we know that God causes everything
to work together for the good of those who love God
and are called according to His purpose
Someday, our cars will stop for good. It may end in a crash. It may end when you run out of gas. Either way, will it come to an end with you saying, "Wait, when's the exciting part? Isn't there something I'm supposed to do?" Or will it end with you saying "Wow! What a ride!"
Tomorrow is no guarantee. Your plans are merely that. Yours. There's Someone at work
who is greater than you, with plans that top yours by FAR. So while you're here, in this time, in this season, at this place, why don't you learn to dance? Why don't you sing? Why don't you clap, shout, and praise? Why don't you look around and realize that this is just a pit stop on the long journey home. While you're here, put your back into it! Show some love, and get some back. Take a few risks, learn some new things.
With Jesus at the wheel, you can be sure your life will be one long joyride.