Embrace the Journey

I keep realizing just how infrequently things go the way that I would like them to go. It’s been a hard process for me to not only come to that conclusion but to also embrace that as a way of life. Life just has a way of throwing wrenches in our gears and things rarely go according to plans. I know that I’ve quoted a wise friend here before, but it bears repeating to share that her motto was, “Embrace Plan B.”

I like to have a methodology and a process to things. People might not realize that about me when they observe what seems to be a haphazard approach towards things, but it’s the truth. I would like to say that my approach isn’t haphazard so much as it is organic. It’s a process with flexibility that I’ve learned to embrace over time, probably after many iterations of frustration and pain.

How often I’ve started projects that I thought would go a certain way only to find that they’ve taken sharp turns off of the course that I had planned for them. It’s too easy to get frustrated when this happens, at least it is to me. I like what I like and I don’t like to get thrown off course. Who does?

But I’m learning to embrace those times when I am thrown off course. After all, if I believe that God works all things together for good, I’ve got to trust that detours are sometimes the means to an end result that’s better than what I had thought out or planned. Detours might lead away from a potential danger or distraction. Detours might end up at a better destination than I thought, a destination that I might not even have known.

It’s still a process for me, a slow-moving journey towards growth. My anxiety still easily rises when things don’t go the way that I had planned, but I’m still moving, even if it is incrementally.

I feel like I’ve been taken off course over the last few weeks. I’ve been focused on things that are important but not things that I would always choose to be focused on. I find it hardest when it doesn’t seem like there is movement in my life. Those times when it doesn’t seem as if there is movement though, there usually is, but it might not be as fast as I would like it to be, or in the direction that I thought that it would be.

In the end, when I look retrospectively at a particular section of the journey, I usually find that the end result was the same or better than I thought it would be. I usually find that what happened in the midst of the journey might not be what I would have chosen, but it certainly ended up better than I would have thought. It’s those times that I need to hold on to and remember every time that I find myself in that same place again.

I’m still a control freak, no amount of detours seems able to change that, but at least I’m learning to give up control at times, or maybe it’s that I’m realizing that control is simply an illusion, something that I try to convince myself that I have to make myself feel better. If I really think that I’ve got control of a situation, it probably just means that I’m missing something important along the way.

Yes, it’s a journey and I’m taking it day by day. Just like the tides, there are ebbs and flows. Sometimes it feels as if it’s all coming at once and other times, it seems that there’s a peace and calm that allows me to relax and enjoy the moment. I’m doing my best to embrace the journey because in that journey is where I actually find the things that I need the most.

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