Imagine this scenario. A husband and wife are hurrying through the morning activities and are planning the evening. The wife says she will be home later than usual and asks hubbie if he can get dinner ready. She gives him some suggestions/directions on what is available and what will need to be done. “No problem,” he agrees. A quick kiss later and they are off for the day.
Hours later, this busy wife and mom is heading home after a long day. She stops by the grocery store to pick up milk….and grabs two fresh-baked pizzas. She arrives home – pizzas in hand – just as her husband is finishing up the dinner preparations. The whole family stares at two dinners.
No, this exact scenario has never happened at my house and is, truthfully, just for the purpose of illustrating my thoughts – because, although, I may not have brought an extra dinner home, I have been guilty of “my plan b” too often. I ask something from my husband, one of my children, a friend or co-worker and expect (even anticipate) they will follow through but I have “plan b” just in case. Perhaps they have failed to follow through in the past. Maybe I just overthink and over anticipate what might go wrong – simply overcomplicating things. I’m sure, far too often, my need to be in control is the real problem. Whatever the cause, too many “plan b” scenes can be frustrating and cause friction in relationships.
The bigger problem is when I do much the same thing with the Lord. When I bring my heart’s burdens, my requests, my needs and my care to Him….knowing completely that He hears, listens and answers. I can trust Him completely – I know this. However, too often just after my prayer has ended, I begin formulating a “plan b,” even if just mentally. What will I do…how will I respond…what will be the next step IF (just if….) He fails to answer??
This is my last thought on “surrender” for a while. (Hopefully, I will look back with even more lessons at the end of the year. But to be honest, these lessons learned do not happen overnight or necessarily easily. Refining – learned through surrender – can be a challenging process. Sometimes painful. But certainly worth it.) I am learning to surrender my constant need for control. Learning to trust more – not only trusting the ones I love but surely deepening my trust in the One who loves me so!! Often, for me, this means refusing to develop a backup plan. Not rehearsing the what’ifs of every situation. Most of all, learning to wait patiently – and expectantly – on God’s answers and His working for me. That lesson, alone, is worth whatever I have to surrender.