When my brother was younger, he used to throw huge fits when we would alter the plans. If we said we were going to Target, he expected Target to be the only stop. If we sidetracked to the grocery store, he would stand there in the middle of the aisle and scream, “But you said we were JUST going to TARGET!!”
Total grocery store meltdown.
It seems that I am a lot more like my brother than I realize. I may not throw a tantrum over errands, but I have a very high tendency to throw a fit when life doesn’t go as I “planned”.
Anyone know what I’m talking about?
I had such an incident just yesterday. I picked my sister up from school, expecting to go straight home, eat some kind of healthy snack, and do some homework. At least, that was the plan.
My sister? She had other plans. Apparently it’s not everyday that someone as “cool” and “fun” as me picks her up from school, so she wanted to celebrate. Translation: she wanted me to stop and go get ice cream as a snack.
Now, don’t get the wrong impression here; I love ice cream. In fact, I eat it now day without the guilt that assaulted me for years. But yesterday, it just wasn’t part of the plan.
I had a choice to make: I could stick to my plan, or I could “celebrate” with my sister and get some ice cream.
Such an easy choice, but for someone with my history, it was a tough one. You see, it’s easy for me to stick to the plan. I’ve sticked to the plan for years. A chunk of my life was devoted to the plan. Eat healthy. Exercise everyday. Be beautiful. The plan still sometimes makes its rounds through my mind.
But I don’t have to live by it.
So I threw it out the window and ordered some ice cream, despite the screaming voice in my head.
And I enjoyed the time spent with my sister…even if it wasn’t part of the plan.
Here’s the thing, beauty of this world latches onto the plan. It digs its nails in the plan and refuses to let go. Beauty is formulated by “rules” and “boundaries”. The beauty we see on the cover of magazines today does not allow for any unexpected turns. Gained a few pounds? You better lose them before we can call you beautiful. Wearing no make-up? You better put some on before you can step into the spotlight. Pimple on your face? You better hide in the corner until it goes away.
Yep, beauty today is unrelenting. Luckily, though, we know the truth. We know that it is beautiful to take life as it comes, with all the mess and all the unexpectedness of it. We know that beautiful means taking those curve balls and working with them. Nothing in life is expected, so why should beauty be determined by any other definition?
God is throwing me my share of curve balls these days, and I wish I could say they were all as small as an ice cream outing. They’re not. But even as He meddles in MY plans, I know that His plans are what will determine beauty. At the end of the day, His plans remain. Trusting Him in the midst of the chaos is beautiful.
So today, allow life to mix it up. Don’t conform to the rigidity of beauty. Don’t let rules rule your life. Live free in the land of the unexpected… it is such a beautiful place to be.
Verse: “I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.” (Isaiah 48:17)