8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. 9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9 (NIV)
Christmas— ‘tis the season of plans. Plans to catch up with friends and family. Plans to write Christmas cards and letters. Plans to attend an endless round of Christmas parties. And don’t get me started on the lists that go with those plans. Plans and lists, my diary’s full of them, and we’re not even hosting Christmas at our place this year.
Are you organised for Christmas? We, in Australia pride ourselves on being “organised”. ‘Oh, yes,’ we say with letters and cards dispatched the first week in December. ‘Oh, no,’ we say, our heads hanging in shame, ‘I still haven’t done the cards.’
Me? I designed a card to print, but then the printer refused to print. Something to do with ink running out and computer systems being what they are, you know, obstinate little so-n-so’s, it refused to tell me what colour ink. I assumed the black ink, so off I went to the shops and bought black ink. Then the printer, pleased with my needless running around, revealed that it was the yellow ink that had run out. Not amused, but thankful I had yellow ink ready to replace. So, there you go, just another hitch to create that special season.
Then there’s the Christmas party with friends. When I received the invitation, I studied the date. Bit later than usual, but do-able. Yes, we don’t have anything planned for that night. A birthday party the next day, but Saturday night, free.
I sensed God had an alternate plan. Really? Surely God can change his mind. I mean, the party Saturday night, it’s tradition. We always go to that party. How can God interfere with our well-preserved plans?
I replied to say we’re coming.
Come that Saturday night, I laid out my party costume on the bed and dressed in my party clothes. A family member needed me to drive them home from the other side of town around the time the party started. Okay, we’ll just be a little late for the party. I calculated the timing and considered it do-able. What’s wrong with a bit late?
But God had other plans. I arrived to pick up and waited and waited. Ah, another special season hitch. I called my dear family member on my mobile.
‘Yeah, yeah, in a minute,’ they said.
My precious party time frittered away as I waited.
Finally, my passenger and friend emerged. By this time my carefully constructed plans had fallen to bits. I conceded that God is right. We’re not going to make it to the party.
‘We’ve been discussing the meaning of life, the universe and everything,’ family member explained as they climbed into the car with their friend.
The discussion continued during the drive back. I sensed this was a life-changing discussion. Was this God’s plan?
I went with the flow with a peace that God’s ways are not our ways.
© Lee-Anne Marie Kling 2016
Photo: Nativity © Lee-Anne Marie Kling 2015