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I get dead set, locked in, singularly focussed on the only way it could ever be, and oftentimes I walk away disappointed. I think I’ve figured it out. I think I’ve weighed every option. I think there is no other path that could end as happily as the one I’ve constructed in my imagination. And so quickly I find out how wrong I was.

My “this is the only way it could ever be” gets trumped by God’s “my thoughts are not your thoughts”, “my ways are not your ways”, and I have to release my “only way” to his greater, higher, and most perfect way.

I’m not a newbie on this faith walk, but I’ve still got quite a ways to go to understand that the things I tend to set my heart upon are not always the things that keep in rhythm with the heartbeat of God. It’s not that I’m chasing after bad things, unhealthy things, unholy or ungodly things. Typically, the dreams I’m chasing are good. But they’re not higher. They tend to only scratch the surface of the magnitude of God’s dreams. I can’t always see that in the short term. I think I’ve lost something important and significant. It is only when I step back and watch as the narrow, pinhead size view I was looking at suddenly begins to open up to a panoramic masterpiece, that I realize my life is in much greater hands when I surrender to him.

Maybe you can identify with something a journaled some time ago when my heart was longing for a “yes”, and God said “no”:

“When disappointment and loss enters our lives it doesn’t walk in nonchalantly with a, ‘That’s a bummer,’ and walk back out. No. On the contrary, when disappointment and loss show up it usually charges in like a freight train, full speed ahead. Sometimes it takes a while to figure out what hit you. And when the shock of it wears off, we are left to grieve.”

“My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will never be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my Mighty Rock, my refuge. TRUST IN HIM at all times, O people; POUR OUT YOUR HEARTS TO HIM, for God is our refuge.”        Psalm 62

When our “this is the only way it could ever be” gets overshadowed by his greater, higher, and most perfect way, may we remember to trust in Him. This present disappointment may feel like the cold steel of a freight train bearing down on you right now, but the beauty of God’s most perfect way will one day make every other dream you’ve ever held in your hand seem but a shadow in comparison.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle; and it shall make a name for the Lord, an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.” Isaiah 55:8-13


To truly comprehend the beauty of what he has called higher, we must surrender our “this is the only way it could ever be” to him. Whatever disappointment he has allowed to fall from heaven he will most assuredly redeem. He will water and nourish the greater dream, and we too will go out with singing, and understanding, and deep knowing that God’s way is the only way it could ever be.

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