I’m sitting here praying about, exploring options, and trying to prepare content for a blog that I’m so excited to start. I previously had a blog that actually helped snag my husband (story for another time, if you haven’t heard it already), but I abandoned it a couple years ago because I had no plan and no time to write posts or really do the things that I wanted my blog to be. Fast-forward to October 27, 2016, and I am a stay-at-home (whaaaat?) MOM (double whaaaat?) to an almost 3-month old son named Henry that I have lovingly nicknamed Stinky Junior, and I’m thinking it’s about time to pull out the old laptop and give this blogging thing another try.
As I was beginning to think about content that I could potentially put on my blog, I knew that I needed to have some posts in a queue in order to not feel discouraged or fall off again. While doing this I remembered a blog post that I had written, abandoned, written on again, and abandoned again that sat in my Google Docs for a year and a half. While reading it, I found myself needing to read the words that I did not even remember writing. I needed to remember that the Lord provides for us the things that we need, even when we don’t know that we need them. He is a good, good Father, and He loves to give us good gifts. So, in honor of transparency, remembrance, and new beginnings, let’s go back to April 28, 2015 when I started a blog post that I needed to read almost exactly 18 months later.
“I never would have guessed that it would be you!” I can’t tell you how many times that I’ve heard this since December 9, 2014. The “it” they’re referring to? Getting engaged at the young age of 20 years old, before most people my age, and planning on getting married while still having a year of college left. And the truth is, I never would have guessed that it would be me either. In fact, I always pushed “the first one to get married” on multiple friends over time and sometimes thought my younger brother of two and a half years might get married before I ever did.
But God has bigger and better plans than we could ever have for ourselves, right? Now, the intent of this post is not about how Sam and I met, our relationship, or about anything of that nature, but it is about how the Father exceeds any and every plan that I’ve ever made for myself and how often I forget that.
Sometimes these plans aren’t as seemingly exciting, positive, pretty, or neat as getting engaged. Sometimes it looks like rejection. Sometimes it looks like disappointment. Sometimes it looks like confusion. It doesn’t matter what it looks like though because in reality, it is always good, and we can trust in that.
In the midst of knowing that the Lord’s plans are bigger, better, and higher than anything I could ever dream up, it’s still hard to trust. It’s still hard to completely relinquish control of my future to Him. Why? Why is it that I latch on to my plans so tightly that the exchange of mine for His always starts with a bit of disappointment that mine didn’t work out no matter how good His plans are? We have a false sense of control in our lives. It’s not an exchange of my plans for His but a realization that His plans will always prevail. He’s the One that holds my future, not just the One to shape my future around.
The Lord gives us passions and desires, but the way they manifest themselves in our lives can be completely surprising sometimes. We make expectations for what we think will come of something we’re passionate about all the time. Those expectations can even be subconscious, which makes our disappointment surprising and confusing, BUT the Father is faithful to fulfill our passions and desires that He Himself gave to us. It is not in His character to leave them unfulfilled, because by fulfilling them and continuing to be faithful, He is bringing glory to His own namesake.
He exceeds every expectation we could ever have if we just open our eyes and see His provision for what it is.
Fast forward to December 7, 2015. Two days ago, I took my third pregnancy test that came back positive, and I stumbled upon this draft of an abandoned blog post that was never published.
The first thoughts after finding out were, “How could this have happened?”, “Why us?”, and “We’re not ready for this.” There were tears, and not the happy kind, but the kind where you are scared and have no other way to express that. We had a plan! I was going to graduate and move to Atlanta. I would get a job, and we would save money for a few years to get into a house. Then, when we were ready and prepared, we would start trying to have a baby. A picture-perfect plan of our house with a dog and a baby… Then I read this abandoned blog post that reminds me that I could be upset that our plans didn’t work out, but then I would miss out on the goodness of the Lord’s plan.
No, I don’t know what we’re going to do. I don’t know how we will afford everything. I don’t even know how to take care of a baby. I don’t know where we will live. And no, we didn’t mean to get pregnant, but we are trusting the Lord that this isn’t surprising to Him, nor is it a mistake. He has gone before and made a way. He will continue to provide for us. His plans are bigger and better than anything that we could’ve ever hoped for or imagined for ourselves, even if it doesn’t look like it.
In the midst of the chaos and confusion, I am choosing to look at the Lord’s provision for what it is. I am choosing to trust that He will continue to provide for us in ways that we don’t even realize we need. I am going to praise Him for the life and the soul that will be brought into eternity though this. I am going to look to Him in hopeful expectation of what is to come because I know that His plan for us and our family will continue on and on into eternity.
Now, here I am, watching my almost 3 month old swing and listening to him grunt and coo, and I think back to getting engaged to someone that I knew I loved even though we had only been dating for 9 months, marrying that man and making a covenant to love him forever, and the weekend I took 3 pregnancy tests to confirm the news that I was scared to accept. I also think back to the early morning that Henry was born, and I laugh at myself for being so scared and unsure. We are still new, inexperienced parents who are just trying to take care of our baby the best we know how, but what we’ve learned in the midst of it all is something that we have been learning all along. The Lord’s plans for us are immeasurably more than we could ever come up with on our own. He provides the things that we don’t even realize that we need and the things that we desperately know that we need.
“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” – Ephesians 3:20-21 ESV
So, no, I never thought it would be me either, but my Heavenly Father did, and I am so grateful.