When our plans to visit Europe were nixed for the third time, Doug suggested a road trip to Texas. Not exactly a satisfying alternative, but with his retirement coming into view (in the next decade anyway), and Ian completely idle, our lemonade making excursion would be part exploratory and part escape.
Becca’s college experience at Baylor was our first connection to Texas and her enthusiasm for the area has not waned. Even though she is years away from settling, because of recent closed doors for Ian in Albuquerque, God has caused the rest of our family to consider Texas as an open window.
More Questions than Answers
After logging hundreds of miles that included some necessary but unwanted stops…(changing a slow leaking tire, and cleaning the entire back seat of puke) we’re left with more questions than answers and a refreshed appreciation for what exactly is HOME.
This isn’t the first time I’ve pleaded with God to show me a glimpse of His five year plan. Thankfully, even though all I can see is a blank slate, the Lord has not been silent.
Back home with laptop in hand, I retreated to our back patio to spill my jumbled thoughts. Distracted by the happy scene around our fountain, I found myself captivated by the birds.
Matthew 6:26-34. 26 Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? 27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? 28 “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, 29 yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. 34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
It’s a long familiar passage but it hit me with fresh relevance. That’s it. That was the crux of my angst. My preoccupation with tomorrow, had stolen my contentment for today. All I had to do was look at those carefree, frolicking birds for proof.
A Fork in the Road
The way I see it, I’m at a fork in the road that demands a choice. I must resist trying to figure it all out and simply trust the One who has. It really is that simple, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. But there’s more.
Matthew 6:11. Give us this day our daily bread,
Even though we say it by rote, don’t miss the profundity of this succinct verse. Jesus taught us to pray DAILY for what we need and that isn’t limited to bread. We see examples of His “in due time” provision all throughout scripture. (90 year old Sarah, Abraham, Isaac to name just a few examples)
Have you ever wondered why Jesus was never early? Perhaps because He desires our total dependence, He wants us to recognize the daily-ness of His provision. That way we’ll depend on Him again tomorrow and the next day and the day after that. What if God granted us what we needed for the month? Now untethered and with our barns full, we’d be suckered into the notion that we don’t need Him.
Where is God’s Provision?
Why is it that so many of us so rarely see God’s provision? I think it’s because we so rarely think we need it. We go to extraordinary lengths to resist walking through circumstances that demand God’s intervention. So whenever possible, we settle for expedient. To appease our impatience, we access our own resources, (what we’ve stored in barns) we strive, we toil, we make things happen. And just like that we’ve accepted less than His best.
I’ve come to believe that the blank slate for my family’s future is an opportunity to make another choice. I can feel aimless and burdened by the uncertain blankness and believe the lie that peace is only possible when I figure it all out. Or …. I can take my cue from the birds from my back patio sanctuary. The blank slate is blank to leave room for the Lord’s abundant possibilities. For now, I simply stay the course. I keep leaning in and listening while holding tight to His promises. While I wait, I enjoy His provision for today and trust that He will shed light on what’s next, in due time.
Psalm 37:34 So don’t be impatient for the Lord to act; Keep moving forward steadily in his ways, And he will exalt you at the right time. And when he does, you will possess every promise, Including your full inheritance.
Dear Lord, You are the God who provides. Forgive me for my demanding spirit that wants to rush your perfect plan. Faithful you have been and faithful you will be. Help me to depend on You daily and trust you to guide my steps in due time. Amen.