This has been a thought that I have found crossing my mind over the past few months. A thought I have a feeling many have also experienced the past few weeks.
When we returned from serving in Nepal after 5 years, I looked forward to many things. I looked forward to spending time with my mom and dad. I looked forward to our teenage sons going on youth trips with our sending church and enjoying some of the normal experiences they had missed out on while living overseas. I anticipated celebrating the holidays back in the USA. I wanted to take the kids on trips to see the sights of America, I looked forward to my middle son having the chance to run track and rooting him on at his track meets, etc.
But then, life did not turn out the way I had expected, and I found myself saying, “it is not suppose to be this way!!.”
See, two months after arriving back in the States, my dad whose cancer was in remission, suddenly began having seizures and we found out the cancer had metastasized to the brain. It was not suppose to be this way.
The holidays I had looked so forward to experiencing back in the USA were interrupted with back and forth trips to the hospital. It was not suppose to be this way.
Then in February, we brought my dad home with hospice and he passed away 2 weeks later. My heart cried out to God in anguish, why now, why God, this is not how I envisioned it. It definitely was not suppose to be this way.
My middle son began track practice in February and was awaiting his first track meet on April 6th, when suddenly the Coronavirus shut everything down, and then the whole season was canceled. It was not suppose to be this way.
The youth events I had looked forward to the kids being apart of, canceled. As pretty much all of life was put on hold and continues to be on hold even now. It was not suppose to be this way.
Road trips to take the kids to the American sites, put on hold, as the stay at home policy continues in most states. It was not suppose to be this way.
And I know my stories, my experiences are similar to many others world wide.
Seniors who missed their last semester of high school and college. It wasn’t suppose to be this way.
Friends whose wedding plans have been canceled. It was definitely not suppose to be this way.
And others who have lost loved ones, and could not have a funeral service or be with them in their final hours. This was not the way it was suppose to be.
Life as we all have known it has been abruptly changed. Things have not gone as planned. Things have been canceled and rescheduled. It was not suppose to be this way.
Was not taken by surprise.
He knew all of these things would take place, and He remains in control even when life seems out of control.
Life disappoints, but God never fails.
Things don’t according to “our” plans, but God’s ways and His thoughts are always higher than our own.
When we see only the here and the now, He sees into eternity, and knows the full picture.
I have surely questioned the Lord during this time, in fact, I have grown quite frustrated at times.
Yet, He remains the same, faithful and true. And His love for me and for you doesn’t change.
I’m finding comfort in the midst of these trying times knowing that God can and will bring good out of all of these seemingly difficult circumstances and days.
Because He is God, He is all powerful, and He can turn all of our disappointments and hurts into something beautiful if we let Him.
Or we can remain bitter, angry, and frustrated because things have not turned out the way we envisioned. We can let this weigh us down, steal our joy, and make us negative.
It is a choice we have to make, sometimes daily.
So though a lot of things have not turned out the way I wanted. Although a lot of the plans I had, have changed or been put on hold.
I take comfort knowing that my God never changes, and that because He is faithful I can trust Him even when it isn’t easy and when life doesn’t make sense.
Now, I’m not saying the choice is easy, nevertheless, it is a choice we make.
Will we choose joy and peace in Him in the midst of our difficulties or will we choose anger and frustration.
I encourage you as the Lord has encouraged me, to choose joy. Choose hope, which does not disappoint. Choose peace, that comes from time spent with Him. Choose to give thanks for the good you do have, rather than complain about what you don’t.
Let’s choose joy!
He is still on His throne, He is still in control, and His love continues to be demonstrated to us day after day!