“You can’t jump straight to the end. The journey is the best part.” ~Robin Scherbatsky (How I Met Your Mother)
If you ever watched the television show “How I Met Your Mother”, you know the story Ted tells is not truly about meeting the mother but rather the journey his life went on during the process. I think I loved Ted because I related so much to his desire to jump to the end of his story and meet “the one” but as Robin so wisely tells him, you can’t skip the journey because it’s the best part. The journey is what makes you who you are and molds the end. If you’ve been around here for a while you’ll know I love the insight that looking back provides. Hindsight really is 20/20.
While I know I haven’t reached my end yet, I can already see how my journey has been formed along the way. The way the Lord orchestrates the most trivial details of our lives to create a beautiful picture reminds me of a Monet. Up close it just looks like a bunch of random strokes and colors splashed across a canvas but as you back up and gain the correct perspective a beautiful picture emerges. That’s how our lives are constructed. What seems inconsequential is actually creating a sunset or flower. We just don’t realize it until later and that dark blob is really a shadow that adds depth to the overall picture.
When I was applying to colleges, I wanted to attend the local university because I felt I had worked too incredibly hard as an AP/Honor student to do anything less. I felt it was expected and to attend anywhere else would disappoint others but the Lord had another plan. I received a scholarship to the other local school, a four year private college which I decided to take against my initial feelings. I lived on campus with the only other person I knew which was the exact opposite of what I thought I wanted. This one choice led me to join a sorority, Pi Omega, which I would have never been brave enough to do at the larger university. I became heavily involved on campus with a variety of activities and met people from all over the world. This also led me to work a job that I would have never known about which led to a moment of needing to find a new job option when the recession hit. Had that not happened, I wouldn’t have been forced into substitute teaching which led to the realization that students were my mission field. Seems like I might have wasted my time in college getting that business degree only to end up in education, right? Wrong again! That degree made me highly qualified for the business teaching position that came available, giving me the opportunity to teach where I currently am and where I know I belong. God even had the sense of humor to throw in my college changing to a university before I graduated satisfying a desire I no longer had.
I love that the Lord uses what I think are detours to take me to a destination I never dreamed I could find and one that has been better than what I wanted. It’s like trying to get to the local playground and your GPS rerouting you to Dollywood. It might take a little longer but it will be oh so worth it. Does this mean I’ve completely let go of the desire to jump ahead of myself? Of course not! I’m fallible and a planner by nature but I am learning to look at unexpected moments of my journey as a potential rerouting of my GPS. Am I avoiding that traffic, taking a more scenic route? Whatever the reasoning, I know that the Lord has the full map and itinerary. I can only see a little bit and truthfully, I’m not even sure the destination is always correct and truthfully, I can't read a map so I think I’ll stick to letting Him be my guide even when I don’t understand or want to push the speed limit. I don’t want to miss out on everything along the way even if it is different that what I planned!