“In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps.” Proverbs 16:9
By: Kerri Young
This last week my husband and I were in Florida (see here if you want to know why) and I heard a great analogy. The analogy was this: as people we can be speedboats or sailboats. Speedboats, as one might guess, motor through life at full throttle ready to get to what’s just around the bend on their own power, sometimes at the expense of the scenery and their sanity. Sailboats take life a little differently, alternating back and forth between the thrill of the wind in the sails and the luxury of a somewhat more relaxed pace, all the while trusting the wind will get them where they need to go.
Are you a speedboat or a sailboat? I think in a lot of ways I can be all speedboat. I want to get there yesterday. And I can get so wrapped up in looking toward what’s next that I forget about what God is doing today. It’s so easy to spend our time anticipating the next big event—marriage, graduation, baby’s arrival, baby’s first steps, the day you have no more diapers to change, the Holidays, the long-awaited vacation, even girl’s night out—that we miss what’s right under our nose….
From quiet, undivided times with our Savior in the midst of singlehood and sweet moments of anticipation and awe during pregnancy, to blowing raspberries on soft bellies after changing a diaper and falling instantly into deep sleep the moment your head touches the pillow because of the sheer exhaustion of mothering, each season is full of blessings if we can only slow down enough to recognize and treasure them.
The other way in which I can be a speedboat is that I can tend to depend on my own power to get where I want to go instead of depending on the Source to carry me there. The fact is, even when they don’t agree with when or how I would choose, God’s timing is perfect and His plan is better. He can see the big picture. He knows what I need to take in and experience along the way so I am equipped for what’s next. He understands what I can handle. When I try to motor through on my own strength I get worn out because life doesn’t always go the way I want it to no matter how much I’ve planned.
Unlike us, children are so good at being sailboats, aren’t they? They can find delight in the simplest things. They have no concept of time, except that it passes. They also don’t feel the need to spend hours worrying about the plan when it changes or doesn’t go their way. They might be disappointed, but they just trust and move on. No stress, no futile attempts to control something they can’t. Just a wide-eyed view of the world and all it holds. I want to be more like my kiddos in that sense.
So, in light of all the exciting changes coming down the pike for my family in the future, I have decided to embrace today. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed, anyway. I want to turn my speedboat motor off this year in order to engage in each moment, because I can’t ever have it back. I’m also going to rest in God’s timing and power. No amount of man-made struggling is going to get us gone any faster. God is stronger and will get us where we need to be when we need to be there.
Yes, I am excited about what God is going to do, but I also want to praise Him for what He is already doing and be fully present here and now. I challenge you to do the same. Let’s be sailboats together. I can’t wait to read about what you see and experience and how God is shaping you along the way! (Be sure and share!) =)