“I don’t think the way you think. The way you work isn’t the way I work.” God’s Decree.
“For as the sky soars high above earth, so the way I work surpasses the way you work, and the way I think is beyond the way you think.” – Isaiah 55:8-9 (MSG)
A few weeks ago, I took Jude and Charlotte to my nieces 8th birthday party at a local roller skating rink. Neither of my children had ever been skating so it was really fun for me to take them.
Being there actually brought back a lot of memories from my younger pre-teen years. In 5th grade, it was the cool thing to have your parents drop you off at the skating rink. Really, we were too young for anything else and it was the only place our parents would let us go. I remember getting ready to go and putting on my JNCOs (yes I wore JNCOs). I remember hanging out with groups of friends and the music blasting. Through all of the memories, what I remember most is “couple skate”. Not because of all the times I was asked, but the opposite. When the music got slower and the DJ would announce couple skate time, I would skate to the outside of the skating area and watch from the sidelines as my friends would skate with their special someone. I remember feeling brokenhearted. The sadness that overtook my heart was painful in the moment. I would pretend it didn’t bother me but really it hurt. It was then the thoughts would begin to take over. Why was I never asked to skate? What was wrong with me that I was undesirable to any boy my age? In the moment it was the worst thing that could ever happen.
As I skated with my son a few weeks ago, I was reminded of those painful moments. The sadness I felt in the season, but as we skated hand-in-hand, I looked down at Jude as he looked at me with a huge smile. The joy on his face was priceless. In that moment, I laughed at my younger self. At how insignificant those couple skates were. What had seemed so important to me then didn’t even compare to the moment I had with my son.
There are so many times in our lives that we are so caught in the moment, we can’t see what God is really doing. We have ideas in our hearts and forget that God’s plans are so much greater. Today I look back at those sad moments in my life and can’t help but think, God was watching over me. God knew the great plans he had for my life. He saw the greater picture and knew what I really needed in the moment. Maybe, just maybe, God was protecting my heart all those lonely Friday nights. He was preparing me for a greater joy. Even when things in my life happened that, I do not believe, were part of His plan, He still took those times and helped me grow. He still walked beside me and even carried me when the pain was too much. As I look back on various moments in my life, I thank God for the unanswered prayers. For the times He didn’t give me what I thought I wanted in the moment. I am thankful today that His plan is greater and that He knows the bigger picture. All I have to do is trust in Him to light up each step as I take it.