Yesterday I started the conversation about Transition and proposed the idea that it “might not be time yet.” Later this week I’m going to continue sharing on “The Waiting Room” and my experience, frustrations and grace that I discovered there. Today I want to offer a picture of transition that is relevant to all of us, regardless of which stage we are in. Whether you have clearly heard the voice of God and are taking steps towards a big change in your life, or you are patiently waiting for a revelation of His will; both are completely dependant on Him.
Proverbs 16:9 esv “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps” I think so many of us know this verse and with our lips we ask God to direct and establish our paths but with our actions…we take back control. For those of us in the waiting room, we are constantly looking for ways to “make it happen!” It being that dream in your heart that is God given but not clearly defined yet. You are still on the potters wheel. God is still sculpting, refining and designing you for His big picture plan for your life. Your dream is only a glimpse at what God has in mind. (By the way…I’m not sure we ever arrive! 🙂 )
For those of you in the middle of transition, you have heard a word from God and you are moving forward in that direction. Or maybe you’ve already taken that huge step of faith. We are just as guilty of trying to make “it” happen. When God spoke to Carey and I that we were to move our family to California and start a church in Southern Orange County I was thrilled to finally have discovered the “direction” and I immediately began to plan how we should take those steps. The problem with my plans is that they are limited to my knowledge and ideas when God’s ways are limitless!
There is wisdom in planning, there is wisdom in gleaning advice from counselors and leaders in our lives but ultimately we must hear the voice of God and be willing to take a step in the direction that He calls us trusting that in the darkness of the unknown, He is already there aligning the way. Jeremiah 1:12 esv “He is watching over His word to perform it.”
The picture God gave me as a reminder in this season is of two balloons. One balloon is the mylar balloon that you blow up for a birthday party. We love to play the game where you volley the balloon around the room without letting it touch the ground. It produces a lot of laughs as everyone dives around to swat the sinking balloon back into the air. The problem with these balloons is they are completely dependant on people to stay afloat.
I also love helium balloons. These are great for parties as well. The difference is, they float by themselves. And, when released from whatever they’ve been tethered to…they will rise to the highest height of the room. One of our favorite family traditions is to release them into the sky attached to a wish! (So sorry to all the save the whale people.) This keeps them out of my car and my house and allows us the excitement of watching them soar beyond our view.
Consider our life as a mylar balloon. We can spend our time and energy “blowing it up” or making what we consider the “perfect plan.” The balloon can stretch and expand to to be a big beautiful balloon. The problem is it requires you or the people around you to keep it in the air. However when we allow God to direct our paths and hold the ultimate control of our future, it’s like the helium in a balloon. When a balloon is filled with helium it may be tethered for a season but when the time comes to release it, it can rise to heights beyond our imagination. This is God’s plan for us!
When we say we want to be His disciple, yet attach a list of conditions, Jesus refuses to accept our terms. His terms involve unconditional surrender.- Richard Stearns