I am a planner. I like to use “strategery.” If you don’t know that word, you are too young and should probably stop reading now. So anyway. I am a planner or as I like to say, a strategic thinker. Sounds so much better. I remember being in high school, coming to the end, and trying to figure out what was next. Where was I going to college? What was my career going to be? What was the PLAN????
I became very much a seeker at this time. Seeking out God’s will for my life. His plan. What was it and how do I find it? I asked Him to show me. I sought it out in every way I could. I read scripture, prayed, asked my parents. Always the same answer…He will reveal it in His timing. ARRRGGGHHHHHH!!! Are you serious? Really? Ok, I will wait. Only…I never got it. No great revelation, no burning bush, no master plan.
I spent the next 30 years following my own plan. Oh, I prayed. And bargained. Sought His strategic vision for my life, especially when things went very wrong as happened quite a lot. When He didn’t provide it to me, I just kept driving and following my own way. My own best decisions led me to unemployment, leaving my wife and family, sons who wouldn’t speak to me, spiritually bankrupt, and financially unstable. My plan worked out really well!
After much forced humility, soul searching, surrender, and brokenness, God has shown me His will…daily. Not in a large, strategic, forward looking way. Just day by day. It took me learning to live one day at a time to realize that He was right beside me, hoping to guide me if I would just surrender.
God’s will becomes apparent to me a step at a time. He reveals it in His timing but in how I didn’t expect. After I worked step 3, turning my life and my WILL over to the care of God, I began to see how He reveals His will to me. When I listen, seek His guidance in my daily minute by minute life, He reveals more. Only He hasn’t so far given me the larger plan.
I recently began work on a Masters in Addiction Counseling degree. God made it very plain to me through prayer, His word, and many of you that I should pursue this. So I have. Only He didn’t tell me how to pay for it, how to navigate, how to get to graduation and practice. He let me know much as He let Abram know…get up and go. I will get you there. Scary but freeing.
In 2016, as I stared down the end of my marriage and life as I knew it, I first truly recognized God’s guidance in my life at the age of 48. He clearly told me that I needed to do a full disclosure of my sexual immorality to my wife. He promised me I would survive. He didn’t reveal how that would look or what would happen in between. That is the first time in my life that I stepped aside, and as my friend Dan says, “let Him drive.”
What I found was His decisions and plans are better than mine. The last 4+ years have been wonderful, ugly, painful, full of joy, full of sorry and damage. I survived. My marriage survived. My boys speak to me. I don’t know how we got here. I just know I didn’t drive.