Drive an hour and a half, end up standing in the clouds and mist, turn around and drive back.
This was an experience my sister and I had while exploring in Hawaii after I served at the YWAM Kona leadership meetings. We drove a whole afternoon, looking forward to star gazing the rest of the evening. People said not to worry about the clouds the last part of the drive as you eventually drive above them. With the expectation of rising above the clouds before us, we drove on, always hoping for the clear skies...which never came. Instead of the beauty of the stars, we arrived to thick mist amidst clouds near the summit of Mauna Kea.
I've been pondering recently on the unexpected and unplanned ways life can go. Like that drive up Mauna Kea, it often turns out differently than expected. A few years ago I never would have been able to predict that I would be living in Switzerland serving and learning with YWAM Lausanne. At many different turning points I may have had an idea of how things would turn out, how life would go...and I still ended up in the clouds. Since returning to YWAM Lausanne for the leadership track, I've seen how I've been loosened from my own plans and expectations. I'm reminded of Proverbs 3:5-6:
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths."
I've been learning again and again that I can't lean on just my own perspective or knowledge, even if I have plans I often end up unexpectedly in the clouds. I hold onto the fact that God's perspective is always above the mist with a clear view, and really I don't have to worry so much. Like that drive with my sister, if I had known that trip would end in zero star gazing I wouldn't have wanted to get in the car. But the time that afternoon was filled with some of the best conversation we had the whole trip.