God is the ultimate agenda bender. I can’t count how many times in my life I’ve had things planned out, scheduled to the minute, and then things go off course, sometimes setting me back in my plans for several hours, days, months, or even years. Occasionally, I end up abandoning the carefully made plans all together.I know I inherited my desire to plan in advance from my dad, because my mom is definitely the queen of spontaneity. Even in college, my dad used to put everything including study time, meals, and time with my mom on his calendar. Later, working as a sales executive who traveled often, he became subject to a number of schedule changes that were imposed upon him, though I’m sure some aspects of his hectic work and travel decisions were self-motivated.
An administrative assistant who worked for my dad many years ago gave him the nickname the “agenda bender” (which with her British accent came out sounding more like “agenda benda”) since he used to plan everything out then due to flight changes, cancelled or rescheduled meetings, he’d inevitably call and need her to change everything often at the last minute.
I’m certain having three daughters only confirmed the realization that things would rarely play out according to his originally scheduled program.
In more recent years, I know that my dad was more sensitive to the timing of things. Living with a terminal illness meant he couldn’t know for sure if he’d be up to going out or having people over. Plans he made just hours before might have to be cancelled if he started feeling bad. He would still write things down on his calendar, but in the back of his head he knew he might not get to do them.
I’ve been reminded a number of times that my plans will fall through, be postponed, or thrown out the window. Fortunately, along with having my agenda bended, God has shown me how His timing is infinitely more perfect than mine, always and in all ways.
I remember wanting Kevin to move from Rochester, New York, to Virginia as soon as possible. After spending one week together in 1998 after we finally had both been honest we had feelings for each other, Kevin squeezed my hand and told me he wished I could be the one. I already felt the same way.
There were many times while I was in college when I would really push for Kevin to move closer, so we could spend more time together. It’s only in retrospect that I’m able to appreciate the wisdom of God’s timing and the ways He prepared us for our vocation of marriage while we were waiting to live closer than 500+ miles apart.
Waiting and trusting in the Lord can be two of the hardest aspects of living the faith, at least they have been for me. Lately I’ve been asking myself: What aspects of my agenda did God bend in the past, and in what ways did things work out better than I’d anticipated? What is He calling me to revise in the present?
Jesus, I adore You, lay my life before You, how I love You. Help me to make You the day planner I live by and refer to frequently. Amen.