When driving to work, I leave with enough time to get there and still get things done around the house before I leave,
This past week, I was surprised by an unexpected challenge.
As I was driving out of our neighborhood, a family of ducks slowly made their way across the street, their progress only a tad faster than a snail’s pace. Cars had stopped and were lined up waiting for the feathered parade to pass.
Once the ducks made it to the other side of the street, we all moved half a block further and stopped once again. A large turtle was making its way with excruciating slowness from one side of the street to the other. Our turtles here are quite large, and they tend to move from pond to pond. This isn’t an unusual sight, but right after the ducks, I was impatient.
We moved another two blocks only to be halted by a pair of sandhill cranes making their way across the highway. These are large birds, protected by law, and they don’t care one twit for people. They stared at the cars while they paused on the road. A few honked their horns, which didn’t phase these birds one iota.
I was late for work. But I did have quite a chuckle as I drove. Not one but three obstacles, all unplanned, each annoying. But definitely funny.
We live in a hurry-up world, where time is valued, producing all we can is imperative, and wasting anything–from our natural resources to time–is frowned upon.
Circumstances happen. Unexpected obstacles show up over which we have no control. And our schedule, which we value, is upended.
Responses can vary. We can be frustrated with what has happened, which affects no one but us. We can become angry with lost time, which can impact those around us in a negative way. If it’s something painful, we can grieve our miserable luck and feel stuck in the hurt.
Or we can see such situations as opportunities. Chances to pivot and try something new.
The apostle Paul had the opportunity to see an amazing vision of paradise from God that he knew was a privilege.
“Because of the extravagance of those revelations, and so I wouldn’t get a big head, I was given the gift of a handicap to keep me in constant touch with my limitations. Satan’s angel did his. best to get me down; what he in fact did was push me to my knees. No danger then of walking around high and mighty. At first, I didn’t think of it as a gift and begged God to remove it. Three times I did that, and then He told me, ‘My grace is enough; it’s all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness.’” 2 Corinthians 12:7-9a
God is more concerned for our character than our comfort. Challenges are often opportunities for us to become more than we are.
If we trust God to teach us in His love.
Life can be seen as a major obstacle or a series of possibilities.
How do you see it?