The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. -- Proverbs 16:9
Friday, May 30, 2014
A Fable for Friday
There is so much that we can do, and we ought to do what we can. Sometimes, though, we run up against our limits, both as individuals and as humanity it general. Sometimes our plans are thwarted and our best, most diligent efforts come to naught. It is almost a cliché anymore to “thank God for unanswered prayers”, but that’s because so many of us so frequently have no idea what we need, let alone what God has in mind for us.
As we said a few days ago, some of the stuff that comes at us is meant to challenge, refine, and strengthen us. God doesn’t want us to quit but to overcome. Other times, He does want us to quit. He’s taking something away that is hindering our development in His direction. If God has burned a bridge, He may not want us to swim the river but to take a different road.
I was never one to plan ahead much. My life has been, as far as I was concerned, mostly just whatever was there to get done. As haphazard as I am, I can see that something of a pattern and structure has emerged from what I thought was just random, scattered debris -- almost as if maybe there was a plan, and I kind of stumbled into it.
The really weird part about it is that where I am is just about where I would have said, thirty or forty years ago, that I wanted to be. However, I would never have imagined taking the route I took to get here.
Suppose you were abducted, blindfolded, and taken up in an airplane. After an hour or two, a parachute is strapped to your back, the ripcord is placed in your hand, and you are shoved out the door. Your chute opens successfully, you feel yourself floating down. You haven't managed to get your blindfold off yet, and you brace for an impact that never comes. Your chute hangs up in a tree. You are uninjured. You get the blindfold off only to find that it is a moonless, overcast night. You have no idea where you are or even how much farther it is to the ground, but you decide to cut the lines. You drop about six inches and start walking. After three hours of trudging aimless through the woods, you see a light and head toward. Suddenly things begin to seem oddly familiar, and when you finally get to the source of the light, you find that it is coming from your own kitchen window.
That’s pretty much the story of my life.