The mark of this season seems to be newness.
Newness of life means new places of risk, which means new places of letting go, which means new places of trust. The recovering independent-spirited-middle-child in me wants to fight it … and the thrill-seeking adventure lover in me kind of loves it.
I’m not sure how the month of August went by so fast, but alas, it has come and gone. Along with half of September. I hope none of you blinked, because you probably missed it. As I was sifting through my journal a couple of weeks ago, I saw this pattern of God doing new things in every area of my life.
New things in my marriage. New things in my friendships. New things in my family. New things in my career. New things in our journey to church plant.
I don’t know if everyone else’s life is like mine, but it seems like when it rains, it pours. Good or bad, once one new thing happens, it seems like it penetrates every little place of my life.
It felt like in the first half of 2013, we were just following a pace car, knowing that the true acceleration point was coming, but still able to just get ready and set. And now, all of a sudden, everything is moving fast and it feels like we’re covering a lot of ground in a little bit of time.
Honestly, at times it feels like we’re moving so fast that everything around us is just a blur. It feels like maybe eventually the ride will stop and we’ll get out and look back and realize we came a long way since the last time we saw things clearly.
And maybe that’s the trusting part of this journey — knowing that when I can’t see, God can, and He is directing my steps anyway, so why am I so concerned with knowing where we’re going all the time?
This past weekend I took a really short trip to Charlotte to surprise my best friend at her engagement party. The last few months have been a bittersweet journey of learning that the day is coming when her husband steps in as best friend and I take the next place in line in her life. In a strange sort of way I feel like learning to release her must be a tiny glimpse of what parenthood feels like.
I think the hardest part, if I’m honest, is that the more I see God doing new things all around me, the more I can’t figure out how it will all fit together. It seems like all the paths I thought were supposed to go to one place are diverging into all different directions.
But He said it would be good. He said he was working all things together for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
This is a promise, right?
So maybe listening to His voice doesn’t always require understanding. Maybe this is what He means when He says it’s the glory of God to conceal a matter, and the glory of kings to search them out. (Proverbs 25:2)
Back in January, I felt like my year was off to a foggy beginning, and what time has shown is that this was the grace and favor of God on my life to conceal things for a time. And now the fog is lifting, and things are looking different than I thought they would. I remembered that in January I also felt like God said this would be a year of new perspective.
So I boarded a plane back to Texas on Monday morning at 6 a.m., and as we took off, I could see the sun rising behind Charlotte, backlighting the skyline so that I could just see a silhouette of the city. A sweet prophetic picture of the dawning of a new season, where we can vaguely see the outline but are not yet able to see the details.
And a little bit later, in the air and flying over who knows where, I looked down through a layer of hazy, translucent clouds. I could see roads crossing, separating and coming together. I could see a river winding in and through all of it.
It reminded me that when we’re on the road, we can’t see everything. We see the fork in the road right in front of us, but we don’t see the crossroads that happens miles later.
This aerial view was a sweet reminder that it’s all part of a bigger picture. Sometimes our paths cross, and other times they don’t. Sometimes we’re on a winding road and other times we’re on the fast track to the next place. But He is the river of life that winds through it all.
My job is to keep dreaming with God, but He is the Dream Weaver. As I learn to surrender and submit each little dream thread to Him, what I can’t see is that He’s weaving it all together into something beautiful.
Suddenly with this perspective, letting go is a lot easier. I’m not sure when I’ll get to know in full what God is doing with these things I hand over to Him, but it’s OK. I’ll see the fruit of it later when the fog lifts.