His Paths are the Best Paths


Throughout my late elementary and teenage years my father served as music and youth minister at several churches. As a teenager this caused me much angst as I always feared the day when Dad would be called to serve in another church in another city. (There was also the angst that went along with the fact that my Dad was my youth minister, but that is a whole other post... and something that we joke about in our family from time to time. :) How great to be an adult and realize that, in reality, I was really quite fortunate... where is that wisdom when we are teenagers?!) Anyway, to move along, I was way too focused on what I wanted and not so much on what might be good for my entire family or, more importantly, on where God might be leading.

I remember the spring of my jr year in high school my parents talking to us at dinner one evening about a call they had received. It was from a church in Idaho that was interested in speaking to Dad about being their music and youth minister. As you can imagine, this what not what I wanted to hear. How could I be asked to leave my friends, my school, and right before my senior year in high school??

I don’t remember exactly what I said to my parents that night, but I do know that I voiced many of these thoughts. As I voiced my feelings -- feelings of how it wasn't fair, how could God send my parents somewhere but not care about what I wanted, etc -- Dad reminded me that God just doesn't work that way. God would never lead him somewhere that would not be the right place for ALL of us. When God calls us, he doesn’t just call one of us. As a family, he has a plan for EACH ONE OF US. Yes, we must all be open to that plan… but it is there.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

God cared very much about what I felt. The problem wasn't with what God was asking. The problem was with me. And, I must admit, that it took several more years for this to sink in.

In that particular instance, we did not make the move to Idaho. However, the fall after my senior year my family did move to Kansas City where Dad began seminary. That was a difficult move for me… primarily because I made it that way. I will say, though, that it has been in looking back over that move that I see the truth in Dad’s words.

It is always a good thing once we are open to what God has for us. And, once I was open to that, God definitely showed me all the good things he had planned for me. As I look back I see very clearly how our move to Kansas City led me and each member of my family to where we are today. Could God have gotten us to where we are today without that move? Maybe... but I don't believe we would be the people we are today. We learn from every experience and if not for that move we would not have those experiences and those particular building blocks from which we grew.

God’s plans are ALWAYS good. We can always count on the fact that He will never lead anywhere that would harm us. He might lead down rocky roads. He may lead us thru difficult and painful times. We can always be assured, though, that the end result is for our good. We can always be assured that we will not have to walk those roads alone. And, as I began to learn that day back in high school, His plans for us as individuals never leaves our families and loved ones exempt. He brought us together for a purpose and that purpose is all part of His plan.

What is holding you back from fully following God and His plans for your life? It it fear? Concern for how it will affect your family? Uncertainty of where following God today will lead you to in the future? Whatever it is, I can tell you from personal experience that God will take care of it. He will take your fears and replace them with security. He will guide and hold close each member of your family. He will take your uncertainty and replace it with assurance.

4 Thoughts Shared:

Joan said...

Hey, Melanie,

I'm back, well sort of. Trying to make time for blogging & commenting.

I can so relate to your post, but my situation was completely different.

If we could only have more wisdom as teenagers, life would be so different for many of us.

But then mistakes made as teens, helps us grow into the women we are today.

God is Good.


Paula (SweetPea) said...

Great post and reflections. A word that struck me is "once"...It is always a good thing ONCE we are OPEN to what God has for us. It's all about perspective but boy it can sure be hard to hang onto that perspective and be open to going through the fire...wondering when the fire of pain and waiting will be OVER. I can't be reminded enough about God's plans and how they are good and He will make things good as we travel through the yuck and pain.

I'm following His plans, as best I believe are His plans. Been asking Him lately to confirm His plans and direct me IF, IF this is what He wants because I cannot stand in the gap and wait any longer IF this isn't 100% Him. But, I'm still standing...so...

Thanks for the reminder. This made me think of my blog title again...His ways are not our ways...they are mostly far from what we ever thought.

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Sounds like pilgrimage to me! An ancient faith that comes full circle to trust in our "down the road's" with God at the lead.

As we look back and remember, let's look forward with all the confidence of heaven to keep us as we go! God is faithful, he will do it.

Love this Melanie. Blessings & peace to you this night.


Sarah Dawn said...

His plans are ALWAYS good, Amen, sweet one, AMEN. We have jumped into HIs plans and trusting only in Him to lead our lives.

Delighted to meet you tonight. Hope you don't mind if I splash around and get to know you a bit more.

Splashing for His glory,
Sarah Dawn