For years I had a rainbow over my head and the sun shining wherever I went. Nothing ever really happened that was considered a “crisis,” “stressful,” or even remotely “devastating.” I think sometimes our little bubbles preclude us from trouble, but as life moves on and we meet more people outside of our “bubble,” we try new things, we live long enough, we make mistakes and decisions that alter our course, we find out things don’t always work out as planned.
Somehow our beautiful day now becomes heavy with responsibility, challenges, crisis, stress, heartaches, financial pressure, and just difficulties all around that become chronic and most days are like this. You may wonder, “Why is it that some get to skate by in life with very little to contend with?”
Do you ever try to pinpoint exactly when it happened? When did it go “wrong?” Where was it? Do you beat yourself up for decisions you wish were different? Me too! But, God doesn’t think like this, in fact, he sees you sitting in the green grass with the sun shining on your face because he knows the way you should take from here. There is a way you can take “from here” which does not require going back to make it right. It can be right “from here.” You won’t find God saying, “See, I told you not to do that, now go back and fix it.” It’s more like, “Hey, look to me, forget that stuff and I’ll make you smile again. I know the way from here”
Girlfriend, there is power to change it, to hold on, to be okay and to find a way through the mess. If we only know which way to take. God said this in Jeremiah 29:11-13: “I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen. When you come looking for me, you’ll find me.”
The problem is the negative voices swirling around in our heads, the well-meaning, ill-timed advice from friends or the notion that we can figure this out on our own and it will all be fine. But, it isn’t. I think we get to the place where we have no other choice but to find God and His way.
In this age of immediate gratification, we can’t fathom going the slow way, but often it’s the little steps taken everyday that lead to progress. No pressure, no weight, just one foot in front of the other much like following the “yellow brick road” that led to the adventures and lessons, that led to the “Wizard of Oz” and finally that led to the power (faith) that was inside all along to get back home.
Maybe “everything” is not always supposed to work out. If it did, we may never find the path God intended for us all along. You see, it’s in the hard places that we finally acknowledge we need God and where new life is forged.
Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.