My mom and I were chatting the other day about our ubiquitous lists of tasks to accomplish. She commented that if nothing else were added and if no crisis occurred and if everything went according to her plans, she could handle life. We both laughed, because we know that's not the way the Lord works.
He expects us to use the wisdom He gives us to build healthy margin into our lives yet to also fully steward the gifts He gives us. And when our plans are interrupted (and they will be!), we are reminded that He is control. Often, those cracks allow the flashlight of God's grace to shine on the ugliness in my heart. I'm reading Tish Warren's book "Liturgy of the Ordinary", and she shares some wise words about all of those little things that go wrong:
"Those moments are an opportunity for formation for sanctification…[They] expose my idolatry of ease, my false hope in comfort and convenience - I just want things to run smoothly."
And that's exactly the ugly I've been seeing, I idolize ease, love comfort and convenience, and just want things to run smoothly. Another friend at church was discussing one of our favorite books, "Hinds Feet on High Places", and that the companions chosen for the journey were sorrow and suffering. I still can't wrap my heart around the fact that those two are the best teachers, I don't want it to be true. Yet in my own life, I know the most growth happens in those "sandpaper" moments, as my rough edges are almost imperceptibly smoothed away.