I’m trying to find God in every moment. I believe He’s there, and that we can find Him in any given moment. Sometimes it’s elementary-school obvious. Then there are those moments when finding God feels more like studying a Where’s Waldo? book. Today I want to take a stab at those, the moments when you look up and ask yourself “Lord, is this a joke? Is this my life?”
I find that I have these moments more often than not these days. Once I get over myself, I find them to be completely hilarious.
Before Friday, my most recent moment of this nature came in the form of an apple pie. I was trying to bake a pie for my first In-Laws’ Thanksgiving— so, naturally, this couldn’t be just any pie, it needed to be the best pie at the table, because I’m trying to impress everyone but also make it look effortless, right? To keep it short, I attempted to “brush” the crust with egg whites, but since I lacked a brush, the egg whites congregated in one area, leaving a mini egg white omelet atop my pie. My attempt to fix the pie with “leaves” I made from extra dough, only earned it the title of “the skin graft pie”. And unfortunately, it did taste as badly as it looked. In frustrated disappointment, I found myself thinking: “Lord, is this a joke? Is this my life?”
Though the pie epidemic was not long ago, on Friday I had a similar moment that was one for the books. I had undecorated our house for Christmas, not because Christmas has passed, but because I had a ‘project’ that day. Bells jingled relentlessly and garland obstructed my view as I ventured 30 minutes away from my home to a local-ish RV dealership in the sticks of Missouri. Let me catch you up to speed: I write for 3 companies right now, one of which is an RV conglomerate. I write 20ish articles every month in which I research and pose as an RV know-it-all, enthusiast. This is comical because I have never been to an RV dealership…ever. And, before Friday, I had only been in 1 RV in my life, and I found it to be a truly traumatic experience (Envision 5 full grown—above average sized– adults, driving aimlessly around Alaska for a week whilst 2 travelers battled swine flu. We were in an incubator of disease on wheels. I have never been so happy for a vacation to end). Needless to say, I know nothing. My RV ignorance is not only palpable, but also hilarious. Literally, the only things I feel I can contribute in regard to article ideas are highlighting airstream boutiques, and offering decorative advice. Basically, I’m an RV expert.
So I arrive at the dealership, wearing a pink shirt, Starbucks cup in hand, which is not helping my initiative to appear less basic. When in situations where I clearly don’t know what I’m doing, I heed my father’s wisdom and “fake it till you make it, and act like you own the place.” Sometimes this works, most of the time it doesn’t. So when I walk into the office, I nonchalantly sputtered a mangled statement like, “Hey, I’m writing this article about decorating RVs for Christmas and so-and-so told me I could come out and decorate one of your RVs and take a few pictures for my article…” Cue blank stares from the RV dealership staff. I guess a twenty-something, female, self-proclaimed journalist/decorator isn’t their typical customer. I was then asked which type of RV I wanted to decorate, which elicited a blank stare from me. My asker then proceeded to speak in unfamiliar tongues listing off types of RVs. To which I confessed, “No, like I know literally nothing about RVs. I’m just here to decorate and write an article. So whichever is outside (lest I have an audience) and easiest is great with me.” Thus I was lead to this bad boy:
Somewhere in the midst of my jerry-rigging fake garland around the lavatory door, and kicking myself for leaving my Pottery Barn Pillows behind, (which would have been a game-changer for the mini-bed) I thought to myself, what in the actual heck am I doing? Is this a joke?
It wasn’t a joke. It is my life right now. God wrote that day, weird as it was, into my story. In the ‘Seriously, Lord?!’ moments, I have to laugh. Because sometimes if you don’t laugh you’ll cry; and today I am royally over crying. So here’s to laughin’.
If we believe that he has indeed written each of our days in his book before one of them came to pass, then this allows us to pause during these moments and say, “You wrote this! Seriously?!” We can’t always see what He’s got up his sleeve, or where the story is going, or how things will shake out, but we can cling to the truth that he is in control. Things don’t always go/ seldom ever go the way I planned, but again, I trust that he is a good author and I’m just one character passing through in his grand story.
I so wish we had insight into the emotional processing of the characters in the Bible. Can you imagine how great that would be? But we don’t have such insights on basically anyone. I will go out on a limb, though, and say that some of these characters probably had one of these moments I’ve been describing at least once or twice in their lives. Had I been in their position, here are a few moments that would have elicited a, ‘Seriously, Lord?’:
When Esther goes from orphaned exile to the queen of a foreign country.
When Moses goes from being Egyptian royalty to a fugitive on the run.
When Joseph goes from being a slave, to a prisoner, to a political leader in Egypt.
When Mary becomes impregnated by the Holy Spirit.
When Jonah is in the belly of the whale…
I’m not making light of these situations, or suggesting that the characters should have laughed at the situational irony. But I am shedding light on the fact that there are moments in our lives where it becomes increasingly evident that we are not in control of our story. When we find ourselves in situations that we wouldn’t have chosen and couldn’t possibly have made up ourselves. God reminds us still…
“Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?” Jeremiah 32:27
No, Lord. Nothing is too hard for you. Nothing is too big or too outlandish, either. Divine Author, seriously? Where do you get this stuff? I find it pretty funny. To realize, yet again, that I am all too often deceived into thinking that I am the main character of my story. I’m royally over the disappointment that comes from that, too.
John Newton’s words ring true when he says,
“How happy are they who resign all to God, see his hand in every dispensation, and truly believe that he chooses better for them than they could possibly choose for themselves.”
Happy indeed. May you resign all to the Lord of all mankind, see his hand in every moment, and actually believe that he chooses what is best. Cue laughter.