Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Connect your dots



“O, Lord, You’ve said You will make my path straight!” Barb cried. “So why is my path so crooked?”


My friend and fellow BSF leader, Barb, was referring to Proverbs 4:11, “I guide you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths,” and Proverbs 3:6, “In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”


After she cried out to God, she listened for His answer. He seemed to say, “Barb, this is my straight path for you!”


Suddenly it all made sense to her: What appeared crooked was actually the straight path God designed for her. Her meandering, rough journey was the God-designed route leading to His good plans for her.


This reminded both Barb and me of Isaiah 55:8-9, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”


Barb hadn’t seen the big picture, but God had it under control.


When Barb recognized these things, she relaxed in God’s love. She felt peace about the way He was leading her through life.


Barb could even look back and connect the dots along her circuitous pathway. One dot at a time, the God-designed picture of her life was taking shape. The process was making more sense. 


What about you?


I have a hunch you, too, can look back and connect the dots and recognize, maybe as never before, that God has been leading you all along. Perhaps like Barb, you’ve discovered that your crooked, bumpy paths are really God’s straight paths.


Look at this connect-the-dots picture. My granddaughter, Claire, almost missed 11 and 12. Have you almost missed a significant dot?


Claire got off track between 14 and 15 but then got back on course. When did you veer off track? What brought you back?


What vignettes you can write about your life’s zigzags?


Was there a time you wanted to stroll down a grassy path through the meadow but, instead, God took your hand and led you to a jagged cliff in the desert?


Look for valuable lessons God taught you at that dot in your life.


Connect that dot to the ones before and the ones that followed.


Look for ways God is bringing your dots full circle.


Write your stories!


Your children and grandchildren need to know that God, whose ways and thoughts are higher than ours, makes our paths straight—according to His definition of the word. Your readers need to know how you have connected your dots so they, too, can connect their dots



6 comments:

  1. This is an awesome post Linda! Many times when I read your posts I feel as if I've tapped into a hotline to the Almighty because they are so often an answer to something I've been musing and praying about. Just today I was thinking similar to Barb, saying to a friend I wish God would put up road signs that say "Wrong Way" so I don't stray off a nice straight smooth path. Now I understand not to fear the bumpy detours.

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    1. Hi, Cathy, what an interesting coincidence--though I suspect it was a God-thing that you and I happened to be thinking along similar lines. :) I like your example of "Wrong Way" signs! Now, wouldn't that be helpful! I love it!

      Happy writing, Cathy, and thanks for stopping by.
      Linda

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  2. I absolutely love this idea! For years, I've understood that the Lord has customized trials for us, but I had never visualized the "path" idea. Your dot-to-dot idea further helps me see how each individual's journey is its own beautiful work of art, and we are in the care of the Master Artist.

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  3. Hi, Lia, it’s so interesting the way God uses other people’s words to shed light on something for us. Barb died a few years ago but before she died I asked permission to share her little story because I found it so powerful, and she said yes. So, you see, Barb and her story (actually it’s like a whole sermon in a couple of brief sentences!) are legacies that still offer blessings.

    Thanks for stopping by, Lia. Happy writing.

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  4. Hi Linda,
    You always seem to strike a chord in me with your posts! This one took me back to the time I decided to move out of state. I was a single parent with two school-aged children and on the surface it certainly didn't seem like a rational plan. Even my brother said "there's a straight line from A to B but Kathy chooses the zig zag course." In retrospect, as irrational as it all looked, I know now that God knew what He was doing.Thank you for another thought-provoking post that gets me in touch with my own journey and with the awesome presence of God in my life.
    Blessings,
    Kathy

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  5. Hi Linda, I've been away and so am a long time catching up. I loved this analogy of our pathway, created and controlled by God, is like connecting dots. And whether we agree that the path which seems crooked is the straight one, it is under His control. Like Kathy, I was a single parent for almost 11 years. Many days it seemed as though path couldn't have been more crooked and filled with switchbacks. Looking back every switchback and curve had its purpose and all of that has brought me to the present. Thanks for triggering memories which along the way have made me who I am with God's help.

    Blessings,
    Sherrey

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