I only wish…
One of my favorite things to do is read.
As a child I would often get in trouble for reading instead of doing my school work. It is almost like an obsession. Once I start, I have to finish. That obsessive tendency I had then still remains today unfortunately. So I have to limit myself. Set boundaries so to speak. I will very easily neglect my job as wife and mother and completely indulge myself in the pages of a book. In other words, reading can be dangerous for me.
It can be dangerous for me in other ways as well.
When I was a teenager I read incessantly. Good books. Christian books. Fiction and non-fiction alike. Historical fiction was my favorite. It was something I truly loved.
It wasn’t until a couple of years ago as I was trying to decide what to do with all of my books that I began thinking about all of that reading I did. And what that reading did to me.
I was dissatisfied with my life. I was discontent. I was in a hurry. I wanted what I did not have. So I in turn complained, grumbled against God and dreamed of what my future would hold… *sigh*
And then my future came to be.
I was a wife *poof!*
I very quickly became a mother *poof!*
Then I became a mother again…. *poof!*
…and again… *poof!*
This was what I wanted, spent years whining because I did not have it. Shouldn’t I be happy?
I wanted my life to be like those in the books that I read. Not that they were without problems, but they were easily and quickly and very lovingly resolved. There was pain, yes. Heartache, of course. Trouble, always. Otherwise there wouldn’t be a reason for ‘him’ to come and save the day?
There were also chapters and chapter titles. A plot one could easily follow, sometimes predict. There was a dilemma and a resolution. A hero. A beginning, middle and end. I think that was the part that I liked the best. It was clear cut, black and white. You knew that the chapter had ended and a new one had begun. There was always an ending that left you feeling satisfied… or at least a sequel that would.
Once I realized this I was convicted. I knew that the way I viewed life, my life, had to change. It wasn’t a book. That’s not real life. Life is unpredictable. It’s messy. Confusing. Not always mapped out. Mundane. There are disappointments. Sometimes you have to play the hero. The ending isn’t always satisfying.
But I was still left with the problem of… what to do with all of these books? Did I really want to get rid of them? They were my babies. Many of them I had read numerous times. How could I let them go?
So I decided to put them in my yard sale and that if they didn’t sell (and I was certain they wouldn’t) then I would keep them.
Well have you ever heard the saying, “God has a sense of humor”? I can attest that He does.
A lady pulled into by my yard, walked right up to me and asked if I had any books. Surprised I said yes and pointed to the boxes. She didn’t even look through them, just asked me how much I wanted for them.
“All of them?” astonished I asked.
“Yes, all of them.”
“Do you realize that there are over 100 books there and you haven’t even looked at a single one of them?” still astonished.
“Yes, well I’m sure they will be read by someone in my house. Is $45 enough? That’s all the money I have.”
“$45? But you don’t know what you are buying!!” I informed her.
“Like I said, someone will read them.”
She handed me the money and she and her daughter proceeded to load the boxes into her car.
I stood dumbfounded. And I watched her load them all up and drive away. My books were gone. All of them. Just like that. Gone.
I was surprised at the emotion I felt. I didn’t realize just how attached I had become and how hard it was to let them all go.
So how does this relate to me and today?
I have been fighting the desire again, wishing that my life was like a book. I just want to know what is going to happen next. I would even be satisfied with just knowing the plot, I don’t have to have the details. I want to be able to turn to that page. How do I know I am following the story line?
This has been my struggle since coming back from Ukraine. The problem is, we don’t know what is going to happen. Sometimes we aren’t even aware of what has already happened! Only God knows and it should be enough that He does. Unfortunately for me, that’s not always enough and I am left with an inward battle. Wishing I had the answers now and wishing I had faith enough to trust.
“All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” ps. 139:16
See, there is a book. God is the author. One day there will be an end and we will know that end has come.
Will He say, “Well done, good and faithful servant”? mt. 25:21