Two weeks ago today, we had it all planned out.
Drop the girls off at church on Monday morning so they could leave with their youth group to go to camp for the week. Spend the rest of the day packing and straightening up the house so my husband and I could catch an early morning flight to Quebec City on Tuesday. We’d be there by lunch time, and spend the rest of the week celebrating our 25th anniversary.
Only, that’s not how it went.
My husband got a message on his way home from work Monday evening that our flight was canceled. He called the airline and found out that our only option was to switch airlines and fly out late the next afternoon, arriving in Quebec City around midnight.
In spite of our perfectly formed plans, circumstances beyond our control changed it all.
I don’t have some kind of headline-grabbing story, like the plane we were supposed to be on crashed or the delay meant we avoided some horrific accident or anything like that.
But I do know that I was disappointed. I wanted it all to go like we had planned.
Let’s face it – you don’t have to have lived very long to have encountered disappointment. When our girls were little, I used to wait until the last minute to tell them about a playdate or a fun family outing because I hated having to deal with their disappointment if something got canceled. But there comes a time when they’re too old for that, and they, like the rest of us, have had to learn to handle disappointment.
In our head, we know that God is in control and that all things work together for good and He only wants what best for us, but sometimes, in the moment, that disappointment can make us feel pretty sad.
Thankfully, in my moment of disappointment (after a few minutes of initial despair, anyway), I was drawn back to Proverbs 16:9, “A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.” We plan and we prepare and we pray, but ultimately, the Lord directs our lives.
Could our trip have unfolded flawlessly? I’m certain it could have, as many of our trips have done before. It helped to think of all the positives from the day – at least we found out the night before and didn’t get up early only to spend a fruitless morning at the airport; it was only the two of us traveling, which made it easier to reschedule everything; the girls made it to camp safely; and we still had time to do all that we wanted to do during our trip.
It was another exercise in releasing my plans and exchanging them for His. That day was a good reminder that my times are in His hands (Psalm 31:15) and that having a God I can trust to always have my best interest in mind is an amazing blessing.