As I was walking I kept thinking about that piece of sidewalk and how perfectly it described my life right now. This year wasn't exactly what I was expecting it to be. My plans and visions for my life is not the reality of what my life really is. I feel like I had this concrete plan, this paved path that I knew my life was going to be and as I was strolling along, something happened and it just disappeared. And now I am standing in a grassy field in complete confusion and seeming chaos. I see myself rooted in place, looking in the distance not knowing what to expect anymore, not knowing where to go from here, and not knowing exactly what God is up to. So many of us are standing in so much confusion, standing in so much uncharted terrain, standing in so much unknown and are so scared. What do I do next? What direction is my life really heading? What do I even want?
And it's in these times that we feel God grows silent. We feel like God takes our sidewalk out from underneath us and then stops talking. It's almost like the more desperate we are, the more God pulls back. Can I make an observation? Have you ever noticed that when something unexpected happens to you, you react? Well, duh, but think about it, you react with whatever you know and are experienced with, which is why I will never surprise a black belt. But, why would it be different emotionally? What if when we are surprised with something we weren't expecting emotionally, we react with what we know? When we are cast into troubled times we hadn't planned out, then we default to finding happiness in whatever way we can. And all too often, that means going away from God and trying to find it on our own. The more we search for satisfaction and completeness away from God, the harder it is to discern His Voice calling us back.
If you're standing in a field right now, looking back at the sidewalk that just ended, then know I am right there with you. If you are watching as expectations you had crumble and are left unmet, then I am right there with you. And if you are feeling like God's voice is much quieter then it's been before then I understand where you are coming from. I want to challenge us to stop searching for the answers and start searching for the questions. How can I still serve You? How can I find happiness and rest in You when everything around me is chaos? How do I let go of my control and expectations? These are just some of the questions that I've had to learn to even ask.
That is my prayer. That we will learn how to ask questions, that we will be patient, let go of control, grow in trust, and become okay with the unknown and uncharted. It is when we step off of our paved walkway, that we find the freedom of a field to run and play in.