Interruptions… ugh. One of my least favorite annoyances in life is being interrupted whether that’s in the the middle of a conversation or in the middle of perfectly orchestrated plans.
Unfortunately, interruptions are such a typical part of my everyday life and my oh my is the Lord working on my heart through each of them.
This weekend, for instance, had been planned for months. I’d been giddy with excitement thinking about it. On Friday morning, Tyler and I were supposed to be traveling to Eastern KY with my parents, uncle, brother & sister-in-law for our Chaney family reunion in the little mountain town of Ary. Once the reunion wrapped up on Saturday, we would drive to Somerset to spend the night with Tyler’s parents and on Sunday I’d be attending a wonderful wedding shower for my best friend.
It was going to be a lot to take on, but I was prepared! Right?
We didn’t end up going…to any of it. Any guesses why?
Yes, of course it was this sick body. Too sick to do much more than move from my bed to the couch to lay all down in serious pain. I deal with sickness every hour of every day but this was waaaay out of my “norm.” Last weekend we celebrated my best friend, Erin, with a bachelorette getaway in Gatlinburg. Although I didn’t participate in all of the outings/events and tried to rest at the cabin as much as I could, three days away from home, traveling, and doing much more physically than I can handle, was definitely too much for my body. Though I am so so thankful I got to be a part of this super special weekend for my girl 🙂 She is totally worth it.
The fallout from that weekend has been terrible. Worse than expected. The extreme fatigue, weakness, nausea, inability to keep nutrition down, and excruciating internal pain continued to worsen through the week. By Thursday I was totally depleted and debilitated.
I was supposed to spend that day packing, tidying up the apartment before we left for the weekend, and resting. All I could do was lay and breathe and try to get through the day. I prayed, selfishly, that my plans would work out and that I would wake up on Friday much better. I also prayed for CLARITY. Clarity in what was the right decision to make, even if it was one I didn’t want to accept. Sure enough, God presented clarity. He delivered an easy answer as I continuously felt worse and worse. Of course, my heart overflowed with disappointment.
My life is ALWAYS interrupted. Making any sort of plans or commitments and actually being able to follow through, feels nearly impossible. And even after dealing with life-stopping illness for over 2.5 years, this is still a hard pill for me to swallow.
But the reality is this: everyone deals with interruptions. Everyone has curve balls thrown their ways, and plans that get wrecked, and disappointments when life doesn’t go their way in minor and major ways. We can learn valuable lessons through these interruptions and it all begins with the way we deal with them.
When your life is interrupted what do you do?
Do you surrender that which is out of your control to the God who IS in control?
Or do you flee…naively believing you can still steer your ship to the shore of your choosing?
Since becoming ill my initial reaction to interruptions has become one of internal guilt. This is an area of great temptation for me and Satan surely knows it. Though I do not have control of many aspects of my health, I tend to always blame myself for the pain it has caused those I love, for holding them back in their life to care for me, and for bringing others down because of my own sad situations.
This weekend I thought:
- I ruined the weekend for my husband. He was supposed to get time away, to stay in a hotel, meet lots of my extended family, and see his family. He was excited. And now he is using his vacation day to take care of me…to be stuck all weekend inside with someone who is not much fun. He deserves better/more than I can give. I wish I was a better wife.
- I’m a disappointment to my family. We made these plans months ago and again they are doing something without me and probably worrying about me at home. I wish I was a better daughter.
- I’m a bad friend/ Matron of Honor. I’m not even going to the wedding shower and I’m not only a bridesmaid but an MOH. What will others think of me? I appear to be a flaky, careless friend. I try so hard to be a great friend but physically I’m never able to show where my heart is at. I wish I was a better friend.
After a round of self-annihilation am I feeling any better than before? Heck no. Now I’m just paranoid of others opinions of my character. And I should never question the amazing support system that surrounds and loves me unconditionally.
You see, things just happen. And sometimes there is no one to blame. There are no scapegoats. And it’s not holy to turn yourself into one or to turn God into one. Blaming God for our interruptions and misfortunes will NEVER help the situation. Interruptions are a constant. When things don’t go your way I encourage you to simply:
LET IT GO.
It’s okay to get sad, disappointed, or upset. Feel whatever your heart is urging. Don’t stay there in your emotions. Surrender control. Accept that it’s the Lord’s job to be in control, not yours. He is the only one who can truly drive your ship to the shore. And ultimately, He may steer in a direction NOT of your choosing.
JUST LET IT GO.
Accept those things that are out of your control but do your absolute best to obey and glorify HIM in ALL you do. Because your attitude…well, that’s one thing that you CAN control.
Through God’s mighty strength which shines so bright in the midst of my human weakness, I’m able to react positively to life’s interruptions.
When plans change, curve balls are thrown my way (AGAIN!!) and my heart is heavy with disappointment, I feel immense comfort in focusing on the promises of my Lord. I KNOW that He has amazing plans to prosper me (Jeremiah 29:11), as His child I’m SURE that He is working all things together for my good (Romans 8:28), I’m CONFIDENT that in Him ALL things hold together (Colossians 1:17), and I TRUST that He withholds no good thing from those who love Him (Psalm 84:11).
He wants the best for me!
He wants the best for you!
He knows what is best for us!
Even in the ugly, there are hidden jewels of wisdom, growth, understanding that He WILL work to make us better and further glorify His kingdom.
Life is absolutely unpredictable.
And though my plans typically do not work out how I hope, I will continue to plan and dream. Goals are important. They give my motivation to get better, inspiration to stay strong, and excitement to look forward to on days when darkness is all I see.
Keep planning, keep pushing, keep reaching for the dreams/plans that you have for yourself. But be prepared and flexible for those interruptions. Accept the changes. LET GO of that which you cannot control.
God knows what He is doing.