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Proverbs 16:9 We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps.
I recently found myself in what I considered a horrible situation.
I had driven 900 miles to the Canadian border. I was so excited as I had 8 opportunities scheduled to speak and share. My wife, step daughter, and granddaughter were flying in the next day to meet me there for some vacation during my mission trip. Then after all this I was going to head on to a Celebrate Recovery One Day Seminar in Des Moines, Iowa. I had heard that some others had had problems crossing the border however I had my passport. I had travelled abroad before and my hosts told me I should be just fine. Well I wasn’t fine. You can imagine my shock and disappointment when I was told I wouldn’t be allowed to enter the country. This took me by complete surprise. I didn’t know what to do or where to go. In fact, as they held traffic to turn me around I didn’t even know what to put in my GPS. I was confused and lost!
I knew that I was close to Niagara Falls, one of the vacation destinations I was hoping to come to with my wife the next week, so I programmed that in to my GPS. I thought I could go there and get my thoughts together. When I arrived in a parking lot I phoned my wife. I still didn’t know what to do and I told her I might head back home. I had only been gone two days, I had nowhere scheduled to speak for the following week, and the next place was in Chicago a week later. I could turn around now, go home and lick my wounds, no one would fault me, I could get back to work, and save a lot of money in travel expenses. I could justify the anger, the pain, the confusion, and the disappointment. As I began to formulate another plan to schedule a couple stops and head home God began to shut those doors too. I decided to walk the mile up the trail to see the water falls. I ended up in a boat, in the middle of the Horseshoe Falls at Niagara. As I stared in wonder at Gods creation, His power, His ability. I thought about what it meant to trust Him and to be a Christian. I thought how I didn’t need to take advantage of every opportunity to get angry, be disappointed, or hurt. I decided to head west and trust Him to make the way! Well…. He did make the way! As I headed west, in to the unknown, God began to open doors of ministry opportunities, speaking opportunities, and financial blessing. In my absence He used my family to minister in Canada and not only did they minister to others but those opportunities ministered to them. I realized I was right where He wanted me to be, we were right where He wanted us to be.
I’ll never forget the Thursday night when God reminded me that His plan was always better. As I shared my story at a Celebrate Recovery in Northville Michigan, at an unscheduled stop, Pamela, my wife was sharing her story at the church in Stratford, Ontario where I was scheduled. God was using us both, in 2 countries, to share our stories to those who God wanted to hear them. Our plan was completely different but His plan was so much better.
I ended up continuing my journey through Michigan to Illinois then on to Iowa. I was blessed beyond my wildest dreams and I literally had a dream come true as I was asked to share my testimony at the Des Moines One Day. The blessings and ministry opportunities that came about as I made the choice to trust God are more than I can remember or have room to write here. I don’t know what you might be going through today but I do know the struggle is real. You may watch me on FB or follow my blogs and think I live a glamorous life. That’s not the truth. The truth is I choose to see the blessings in all things. My life is tough, just like yours. I deal with disappointment, anger, confusion, frustration, pain, and resentment however I don’t stay there! I quickly reel those feelings in and regain my joy because I trust in God.
2 Corinthians 5:7 “we walk by faith, not by sight”
Don’t get caught up in how things look. Don’t get angry every time you have the opportunity. Get caught up in the truth of Gods Word, His promises. I do know the struggle is real but I also know that God is real and that if we trust Him it’s all gravy! Life’s not perfect but as we trust Him we can see it perfectly.
Don’t cling to the boat. The boat won’t save you in the storm. Focus on Him instead of the storm and before long, the storm will still be there, but you won’t even notice it!
Have a great day, I’m gonna. Remember, it’s a choice!