2014, so far, has been a new year of very little sunshine and a whole lot of fog. It has been so cold that the fog has frozen and actually been very beautiful… at times. The fog has also been daunting… almost suffocating. It has felt at times as if life is closing in around you.
A few moments of a few days we have had glimpses of that round orb in the sky we affectionately call the sun. We are drawn outside to stand in its magnificent rays of light.. hoping for some warmth and light. It seems that as quickly as it comes, it is gone. It really depends on where you were at that moment in time.
The fog of late has seemed to be a metaphor for life. We can get bogged down… fogged in… by life’s circumstances. It creeps in and soon we can’t see but several feet in front of our faces.
We are under a shroud of doubt, pain, loss, hurt, shame, sadness.
At times visibility goes down to zero and we can see nothing in front of our faces. Fear sets in.
Where are we headed? We can’t see down the road… only the part right in front of us.
Do we need to see much further than that? We certainly don’t have control over what comes this afternoon or tomorrow or next week or next month or next year.
Do we really want to have control over that? Do we really want to know what is coming? I think that might be terrifying. What if we find out that which is coming is not sunshine and roses?
I saw a commercial recently on television about heart attack prevention. The commercial starts with a gentleman getting a text reminding him that he would be having his heart attack tomorrow. Stopped me in my tracks. What would I do with that information? Would I really want to know that?
I’m an infamous “trouble troller.” I think far too much about what might happen in the future and I get myself prepared for what I will say and do. I’m learning this is not healthy nor productive. My wise brother told me just the other day that I’m buying trouble. Who me? Yep!
He likened life to a golf putt. You have about six inches beyond your putt that you actually have control over and then it’s out of your control. A blade of grass, the contour of the lawn, a breeze, the force behind your putt… these factors and many more determine where your putt ends up.
Six inches. That’s all we need.
I’ve got God and those six inches in front of me… that’s all I need. Anymore than that is too much for me to bear. I need to stay in the moment that He has me in right now… doing what He’s called me to do.
What is He calling me to do?
Love God and love people. (more wise words from my very wise brother) The loving God part is the easier of the two. The loving people part… that is more difficult.
Suddenly that six inches in front of me is precious. As I wander through this fog, I only need that little space in front of me… for it is filled with hope, love, strength and grace from my Heavenly Papa. Anything beyond that will get to me when it is the right time. To worry about what is beyond the fog only makes this journey harder than it already is.
My sister-in-law shared a recent blog entry from a friend of hers. It put this all into a fabulous perspective for me. Being a writer, this analogy about life was perfect.
“God is the author. I am not writing the story. I am a character and the script is not mine to write. The good news is that I have had a glimpse of the end of the story: there is a bride and a groom at a banquet…joy unending…everything is right, just as the author intended from the beginning of the story. And I know that this author has thoughts far beyond the greatest story that I ever imagined. So, I choose to be a cooperative character instead of interrupting the story over and over to make suggestions on how I think the next scene ought to go.
We are facing these, and other, changes in our life. We feel a bit like we are on a walk in a mist-shrouded forest. We keep walking but it is difficult to see where we are going. The destination is unclear. The path can seem a little cold and uninviting. But (we) have always loved walks through the forest, and who are we to think that all days will be sunny and warm with a clear destination? Life has many seasons and all sorts of twists and turns in the journey. Still, God is THE AUTHOR of all things: this world, my faith, our lives and eternity. And as for me and my household, we choose to play our part in the story, with eyes wide open to catch glimpses of the author. As for me this year, I choose to give up the practice of trying to re-write the story; that is not for me.”
(Kimberly Beine The Beine Bunch; embracing life’s adventures)
Perfect! I’m not the author! I’m not writing the story! I just have the privilege of living out the story He is writing for me… six inches at a time… loving Him and loving people.