Have you ever been on a walk and found a path that is smooth and easy going? It’s a straight path before you, it makes sense to be on this path, and there is no desire to change anything about it. There are no mountains to climb, no rushing rivers to cross, just a pleasant stroll through a simple forest of trees. That has been my life these past few months. Things have been going along nicely, nothing too troublesome or traumatic in my life to cause me to fall on my face and scream“Why?!” just a leisurely stroll through the day to day grind of life. But, as a Christian of many years, I should have known it was too good to be true! These leisurely strolls never last long, because it never fails, eventually there is a mountain plopped down in front of me and the leisurely stroll has just turned into a rocky climb up a steep mountain.
This is exactly what happened to me last week. I was enjoying the time that I was having with my Lord, walking through this forest of life, enjoying the scenery and enjoying the peacefulness of it all. Then, out of nowhere came change- change that will cause me to have to readjust my whole life and schedule once again. I will sum up this mountain for you in six words- my daughter is moving back home. Yep, this empty nester just went from empty to full in the space of two hours! You may find this funny or even troubling when I refer to this change as chaos, but trust me when I say, once they are gone and you get used to it, their moving back in can be a shock to your system! But, I also know that my God has a plan, a purpose and a reason for all of this to happen at this moment in our lives; not only for me and my husband, but for my daughter as well.
“A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9
This scripture has been rolling around in my head since the moment my daughter told me she needed to move back home. I had these great plans and ideas of what life was going to be like for the upcoming months and how I was going to get this accomplished and that accomplished, how I was going to be able to have time to do this and do that, but God knew differently. He knew exactly what was going to happen before it happened, and no matter how much I want my plans to work, in the end, He will always direct my steps.
Change in our lives is inevitable. In fact, as Christians we should desire change. If we do not change then we stay the same people year after year and never grow in our faith or our relationships. If we do not accept change when it comes then we are ultimately rejecting God’s will for our lives. God is always in control of our everyday lives. Every moment of every day is in His hands. As Christians change is inevitable, and when it comes, how we handle it determines how much we will grow from it.
Change is the proof of God’s providence in our lives. Providence is the foresight that God has over all our days. He knows the end from the beginning. There is not a single moment in our lives that God has not already seen, planned, purposed and made a way for us to walk in it. Change is going to happen. There is nothing we can do to stop it. It is how we adjust and handle the change that makes the difference. My first instinct when my daughter told me she had to move back home was to freak out. I have to be honest; I was not ready to give up my solitude and quiet time in the morning to accommodate her. (We live in a small home, so her moving in makes life a little close for comfort!) But, then the Lord showed me that by making a few small adjustments to my schedule I would have that time that I so desperately desire to keep. He showed me that He already has it all worked out and all I need to do is trust Him in it.
So many times I think we get stressed out and freaked out when sudden change comes upon us, because we forget that our God is in complete control of every situation at every moment of our days. There is nothing that escapes His notice. He was not surprised that my daughter needed to move back home, because He had already seen it, planned it, and has a purpose for it all. I can take a deep breath and know that He is in control. When I see that this change is His doing, the mountain doesn’t seem so big after all.
We have plans, we have dreams and goals and desires, but we also must remember that God is the one who has made the paths we are to walk. He is the one who directs the events of our lives. He is the one who designed that mountain in your life, and He is the one who will get you over it too. Providence is the knowledge of God which governs each and every one of us. The changes that come into our lives are meant to grow us. They are meant to increase our faith, to increase our trust in Him and to show us that our God is always and forever in complete and utter control. We make plans, but the Lord directs every single one of our steps.
I do not know what changes you are experiencing today, but I pray that you can take comfort from the knowledge that God is in complete control. Nothing happens to us that does not first pass through the hands of our Father in heaven. He is not shocked or surprised by the events in your life. He is not scrambling around heaven trying to figure out what just happened! He put that mountain there in the middle of your path, and He will get you over it, if you just trust in Him. I pray that we would see the hand of God in every moment of our days and know that in the end, He will always direct our paths. In Jesus Name, amen and amen.