Sometimes we assume things that are far from life’s reality. For example, we assume we’ll have the health to do what we believe God called us to do, and we assume we’ll have the time and resources to do it. It’s natural to assume you’ll always have the love of your life by your side.
I’m sometimes asked if I feel cheated or angry about losing Tammy. Of course those are very real human emotions and, yes, I do struggle with them. Following her death, I realized that every dream I owned had her front and center. She was my dream buddy. We were in the throes of re-dreaming our lives, our family, and our ministry together. It was exciting to dream with her. She was so full of life and willing to go anywhere and do anything. She was developing a confidence that thrilled me and made me proud. It’s nearly impossible to imagine doing life without her. Yet death has separated us for now. The dreams died, but not the ability to dream. Am I disappointed? Yes, but not with God. Of course it’s tempting to blame Him, but I dare not, because He’s not the problem, nor is His plan for Tammy the problem. The problem is me.
I once assumed God's obvious grace and goodness to me had a lifetime guarantee. Never did He promise me Tammy would always be by my side. Never did He promise life would be a smooth road. Never does He promise things will go as I’ve planned. Like many people, I’m guilty of presumption. James poignantly addresses this problem.
"Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes” (James 4:13-14).
Life must be dreamed, planned and engineered to the best of our ability. This is the responsibility of every believer. What we cannot do is fight the Lord's right to a deeper or broader plan that governs the affairs of His children. We must hold to the knowledge that our lives are but a mist, or we’ll be consumed with disappointment in God and with life itself. We mustn’t slip into a twisted logic that pushes God away as impotent.
How then do you struggle? Disappointment can overwhelm us unless we meet God with a greater sense of trust—even when we don’t understand Him. We can trust His infinite wisdom and affection for us as we fall into His hands and wait for His moving. James encourages us to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that" (v. 15).
So this day begins for us with plans, schedules and appointments...Lord willing. We’ll do life to the best of our ability, according to His sovereign will. We’ll live and do this or that, and He’ll be glorified by our trust.
I am so satisfied with Jesus!