Last night a good friend called me. Ironically I was headed to bed, having already fallen asleep earlier, sometime around 7. (It was a l-o-n-g day.) But we had not spoken for a long time. His wife has been dealing with some pretty unusual sickness issues. I wanted to bring comfort and so I stayed up. On some levels it was more for me than for him.
A lot of our conversation was focused on the “next” step. I needed that.
Why? Perhaps because last night I realized that for year three there is no “family vacation”, no going away. I realized it will be miraculous if I get through the third tank of gas on my motorcycle this season. Came to the conclusion that going to the lakeside restaurant at Lake George is off the table this year…again. (As I looked at the hours at work I spent over the last few weeks I said to my wife “all that overtime” is time I miss with people.) I thought nearly 400 “important” emails remain on my desktop from the last few months. Will I ever get to them?
I wasn’t angry, just not really understanding. I have to be careful not to think back to what I had but remain cognizant of what I have. Stay thankful. I continue to seek God in the now to see what may lay ahead for the tomorrow.
A friend spoke on Sunday and said he had been asking “why am I here” when encountering difficult situations. “What is there to learn?” I realized a while ago that what I do is not who I am, that I am not defined by my work or workplace. Because internally, desirous to come out, is the Creator of the universe. So why am I here? A question that looks for answers.
As my friend and I spoke, it was about what can we create. What could we do? What could we conquer?
Despite my best efforts to “stretch” I feel “confined”. And I find myself constantly thinking about Joseph in the Bible. On so many levels I feel as though I mirror him. I am sure others who take the time to reflect see those things as well.
Here was this cocky young man who was the apple of His father’s eye. He was given a coat that caused him to stand out, to be seen. And he had a dream. Instead of keeping it to himself (Been there.)he shared it. Now perhaps he shared it, just to talk about it, to see how it felt. Maybe it was out of pride or to prove something. Whatever the reason, it ended up with his visit to the pit sans coat. All of a sudden his view of the earth was different. No longer looking down he now had to look up to see light, life. And before he really had a chance to embrace that, he found himself take prisoner, being sold into captivity.
I identify with that. In the very early 90’s I realized perhaps I was too brash, too outspoken and I found myself “taken” prisoner. Everything kind of went upside down. Life changed. Not only was I newly saved, learning a new language, a new life, even newly married, but I was in the midst of some fairly crazy scenarios. For 3 plus years I identified with the pits, the captivity.
But God said and continues to say, “I know the plans I have for you. Plans of good!”
Just as Joseph now found himself sold into a new scenario at Potipher’s I found the internet. 1995 I viewed my first web page. All of a sudden I encountered new vistas. I found myself with a new coat just as Joseph did. Unlike Joseph I did not lose that one, but the year 2001 came upon me with so many difficult times and situations, I could not count.
The next 5-6 years were a blur and dark in so many places. I look back and see the shaping of the Lord in my life. Perhaps that is how Joseph felt under the ground in yet another prison. Falsely accused, he was imprisoned. But his gift, his function was in play. He interpreted dreams. The Lord was still talking to him. And he was still listening.
Some time after Joseph was released into Pharoah’s hands, given status and stature, life changed.
Life always changes… Sometimes you hold on to a promise. Only this weekend I thought about a promise I had received in 1991. I thought I had seen it, but then it “slipped” away. But a promise from God is a promise from God. I thought about it on Sunday night while Tina was away. I looked at the picture where it had been given. “God, is this still on the table?” I inquired. This morning the prophetic voice who gave that sent me something. I have not seen him since 1992. A sign?
My friend last night shared his “frustration” but he also shared his hope. It is time to turn our weights of frustration into banners of hope. To lift up our eyes, to hold our heads high.
I know my walk is not unique, my season not un-walked by others. Life has interesting ways of revealing you and manifesting Him.
Today, share your hope with another. Refuse to come under and choose go over!