We expected our porch to be finished by last Christmas. Our kids would have all been home at some point between then and the end of January, and we looked forward to having space where all of us could sit together. Without crowding or someone standing.
It’s still not done.
When Mom passed and left us a little money, we decided to fulfill a dream we’d had for years. Extend the slab of our patio to offer a place for many to sit and enjoy our outdoor space.
Pulling the trigger on any project like that is a big deal. There are so many other things that need to be done. Could be accomplished.
We chose to pursue the dream. Hospitality is a big deal for both of us, especially where our family is concerned. We researched the proper people to help us and moved forward with the plan.
There’s the rub. The plan.
I not only knew what I wanted, I knew when I wanted it done.
That plan got kicked to the curb.
It wasn’t anyone’s fault. That didn’t stop me from wanting to blame someone for my frustration and disappointment. And the royal mess that’s been our backyard for longer than I anticipated.
Unforeseen circumstances happened. Our HOA (bless their hearts) requires permits of all kinds for any project done outside. Some have taken more time to process than expected.
Again, I wanted to blame somebody. At least the system that seems to layer policy on policy for the express purpose of frustrating homeowners.
Combine that with the amount of rain we’ve had the last several months where the only thing missing from our backyard wallow were the pigs to roll in it.
I had an “aha” moment. A perspective I’d worked hard to avoid.
This isn’t about my plan not coming to fruition in my time.
It’s about me learning to live with the frustration of not being in control of what’s going on around me.
I’m an easy-going person, and I’ve fought the thought of being at all high-control in anything I do or with anyone I’m with. Mom was the control person in our family, and I wasn’t her.
Well, that’s not totally true.
We’re all control freaks to some extent, some more visible in their aggressiveness than others. Some, like me, are passive and try to put a humorous spin on our control.
Part of our brokenness is wanting to control things we were never meant to control.
Control, complete understanding, sovereign presence is all God. We can’t know everything or make all things work our way. No matter how hard we try. That attitude will only cause frustration and anger.
For me, this is a time of waiting. Not stressing over what I can’t change. Not grousing over what I can’t do. I prepare, I plan.
Then I wait. For God.
Many get frustrated with Him because they feel He doesn’t listen or work quickly enough the way they want Him to.
He alone knows the big picture. He knows better than we do what we need. And His plan is to grow us to become more like Him in character and attitude.
Not a pleasant process. But the results are worth it.
Even if it does require a little wallowing.