Last Sunday I was in charge of the children’s story during worship. I enlisted the help of my
long-suffering loving husband to get my point across.
I began by telling the kids that I had been having trouble deciding what I wanted to talk with them about, and I asked my husband to come up to see if he had a story he could tell.
My husband acted surprised but came up to give it a try (He is a better actor than I realized.). He sat down on the first pew to talk to the kids, but I interrupted him. I told him that I always stand up when I talk to the kids and he should, too.
Amidst chuckles from the congregation he obliged me and started again, this time with his hands in his pockets. Again, I interrupted him and told him to take his hands out of his pockets because I use my hands a lot when I talk.
The congregation was getting quite a kick out of our little scene by the time my husband started talking about sports and I interrupted him to tell him I didn’t think that was an appropriate topic for the children’s story.
At those words my husband told me that if I thought I could do a better job I should get up and tell the story myself.
When I stood up I talked about the fact that we often say we want God to be in control of our lives but, when things don’t go the way we would like, we often try to take the control back, just like I was doing to my husband.
I gave an example of a situation I was going through at that moment where I wasn’t trusting God’s plan and I was trying to take control back.
You see, I have been working for the past several months towards a goal I felt God was calling me to.
In the beginning, everything was lining up perfectly and so easily I was just sure God would continue to make the way smooth until I reached my goal.
However, about two weeks ago a couple of speed bumps popped up and last week, yet another.
I started to worry. Did I have it all wrong? Had I misinterpreted God’s plan for my life? Why wasn’t the way continuing to be smooth and easy?
Oh, Jackie, of little faith is what Matthew 8:26 might as well say.
How could I question the God who parted the sea, closed lions’ mouths, and rose Jesus from the grave?
If God intends for me to do the job I thought He was calling me to then He can, and will, smooth out those bumps and make the way straight again.
Yet, I also know that sometimes, in instances like this, God is saying “wait” or “no”, and I want to be alright with that, too.
Looking back there have been many times when I thought I was following God’s plan for my life only to encounter some curves, speed bumps, and detours along the way. Yet, God was with me every step of the way, refining me, and showing me how much I need to trust in Him.
Many years ago I was worried Julia would be an only child. Sure, the way wasn’t smooth and I had to endure 4 miscarriages, but God blessed me so much more than I ever expected with the five beautiful children He entrusted into my care.
When I graduated from college I was just sure I would get a teaching job right away. I ended up spending a year substitute teaching and another year being an aide before I had my own classroom. Those two years allowed me to learn so much and made me appreciate my first real teaching job even more.
By my sophomore year in college I was beginning to think I would never find a boyfriend let alone a husband. Yet, 22 years ago this month a friend introduced me to my husband and I have never been lonely since.
When I decided to talk about God being in control of our lives to the children that day I really was telling the story as much for my benefit as for theirs. Sometimes I need to be reminded to trust in His plan and to let Him actually be in control and not just say I want Him to be in control.
My prayer today is that I will be thankful no matter how this situation I am in plays out. Not only that, but I pray this will draw me even closer to God and that He will show me that no matter how hard I try to take it way from Him, He is in control. I just have to trust in His plan.
This verse is one of my favorites, but sometimes I need to be reminded to not just like it but to live it.