Three times this week has my young daughter come up to me and asked me to help her pick between to choices. The first time she showed me two shirts and asked me to pick one… I selected a cute pink button up over a black t-shirt. She gazed at my choice and then said, “No Momma, I wanted you to pick the other one.”
I am sure that you can guess that the other two conversations went the exact same way. I managed to select the wrong book to read her at bedtime one night and the incorrect breakfast cereal when asked one morning. Needless, to say I was feeling like my opinion was starting to hold a little less weight with my six year old.
In my bible study this week I found myself reading this passage in Psalm 81:11-14:
11 “But my people would not listen to me;
Israel would not submit to me.
12 So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts
to follow their own devices.
13 “If my people would only listen to me,
if Israel would only follow my ways,
14 how quickly I would subdue their enemies
and turn my hand against their foes!
I found myself realizing that the same frustration that I felt over having my choices dismissed by daughter over and over this week is the same way that God feels with us much of the time. I thought about how many times have I gone to him for guidance and direction but not liked what I was told… I knew the answer was too many.
God’s ways are not always the easy ways and often what he asks of us is more than we are willing to give. Therefore we choose to go a different way- our way. Things may go well for a bit, we walk around thinking how smart and creative that we are for coming up with a much better plan… but that never lasts long-eventually our plans unravel.
When my daughter choose a long sleeve black t-shirt on a warm day, I knew she would be too hot on the playground at school. When she choose the other breakfast cereal to eat that morning, I knew that she would not like it as well and would have to go to school still a little hungry. However, as a parent, it is important for me to allow her to choose and then see that her way is not always the best way.
Our Heavenly Father also has to stand back and watch us do things the hard way many more times then he would like. I am sure that he has shook his head many a times and thought to himself, “Christie, why do you insist on making this so hard?” My ways are harder… and seldom successful so I where do I always end up? At his feet again asking again for direction – but this time I also know to ask for the courage and wisdom to follow where he leads.
Often God allows OUR plans to fall apart so that HIS plans can come together.