My situation reminds me of times that I use navigation to find my way through unfamiliar territory. On many trips I make at least one wrong turn, and my navigation flashes a notification that reads "Rerouting." It immediately maps a plan to get me to my destination from the road that I unintentionally traveled. How I wish I had this handy tool the day of my brother's wedding...when my sister and I found ourselves driving in circles through Illinois cornfields, just praying we would make it back to the church in time for the ceremony!
But how much more frustrating is it when life becomes unpredictable? For most of us, a whole lot. Women typically like stability. Stability provides us with security, and makes us feel somewhat in control. But what happens when all of the sudden we come upon a detour, or we make a wrong turn? Do we give up? Do we lose our ambition to try? Or do we simply pray for patience and reroute?
One of my best friends, my coworker, my "big sister", Marea, found herself in such a situation just this week. She awoke Thursday morning with lots of plans for the weekend. It was to be a busy, busy weekend for our school. By lunchtime she had received the shocking news that her mom was diagnosed with cancer, and by dinnertime, she was on a plane to NY.
As I thought about how my weekend was impacted because of her circumstances, I could hardly fathom the adjustments she made within those few hours, in addition to the overwhelming range of emotions she was and is facing.
Life is unpredictable. We cannot gauge with any amount of certainty what will happen a week, a day, or even an hour from now. How do we deal with that?
Planning is a Biblical concept, but so is accepting that our plan isn't always God's plan. That's difficult for me to swallow, but I know that it's true.
Flexibility is a character trait that I want to further develop. Why? Because our level of contentment is significantly affected by our ability to be flexible. Have you ever seen a baby or a young child who is used to rigid routines? What happens when a little detour arises? They become the most discontented little people on the planet! They tend to make everyone around them miserable, as well.
A woman who has learned to be flexible has learned one of the secrets to a contented heart.
I want to be that woman.
Action Step: If my day or my week were to be completely interrupted because of the needs of another, how would I react? Would I graciously sacrifice my schedule, my plans, my agenda? Or would I recoil in anger and frustration? What can I let go of in order to become more flexible? How can I prioritize to allow margin? Chewing on this...
"Do not get tired of doing what is good. Don't get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time."Galatians 6:9