My folks traveled a great deal when we kids were growing up.
Dad was a sales manager, and back in the day, his company took their major suppliers and large customers on gratitude trips. He and Mom got to travel to wonderful places, all over the Carribean, Greece, and places that were too marvelous for my young mind to imagine.
Travel was something I got to experience through books. Reading of people and places unknown piqued my imagination and took me to places that allowed me to leave what I thought was my boring life and experience the unbelievable.
When my folks returned from their journeys, Dad would tell us the details of the trips. His favorite sites, the different foods they’d eat, the people they’d meet. Dad was a lover of maps, so journeys were the fulfillment of his fancy. He was a storyteller so he could weave the wonder of the trip into a fantastic tale.
With that puzzle piece of my story, it’s no wonder that travel is exciting.
Maybe I should say the idea of travel is exciting.
I’m on a trip now, encouraging women who’ve devoted themselves to serving others. I’ve anticipated this trip for months. Looking forward to the opportunity to bless those who are making a positive impact on the lives of others.
Until this past week. When the reality of leaving hit. I wasn’t ready to go anywhere.
There’s so much work to do. People to meet with. Responsibilities to complete. Meetings to attend.
And the holidays! What was I thinking? Thanksgiving and Christmas will be here before I know it, and I’ve not begun to think about that.
Packing? Don’t get me started. Do I even have the clothes necessary for this trip? Where’s my passport? Had it expired?
My excitement unraveled. I got weighed down with details. The fun and fascination fled with the onslaught of specifics.
Journeys appear to be so much fun–until I’m in the middle of it and realize I’ve no control over what’s happening.
Life is our great journey. The great adventure. Some of the things we encounter are filled with joy and excitement. Successes of all kinds. Making it through school and finding a job. Solid relationships. The possibility of marriage and children. Financial security.
Those things are worth celebrating.
The things over which we have no control? Poor health. A lost job. A broken relationship. Infertility. Feeling lonely because there isn’t someone in life to truly care.
Much of our journey is pockmarked by poor choices. That’s life. But the rest? The uncontrollable?
It’s why God invites us to journey with Him. To bring Him into the tough conversations, the miserable circumstances. He knows what we’re going through–even what we will go through. He won’t prevent us from making poor choices–He loves us enough to allow us to make our own choices without micromanaging us. He doesn’t prevent the bad because He’s not a puppetmaster.
He’s gracious and loving. Offering His strength and courage to get through the hard times.
I’m on this trip knowing I’m not alone.
If I forgot something, it’s no big deal.
God is my enough.