Did you ever come upon a moment when you had the choice of going with the flow or forcing things to stick to your agenda? I struggle when I'm faced with those moments. What is more important, being flexible or following through with the itinerary. I do think that there are times when the agenda MUST be accomplished. Other times, flexibility can bring about special moments that couldn't otherwise be duplicated. Today was one of those days where I was faced with a choice . . . .
The kids and I were in the car, with a list of errands that needed attention. I had prioritized and written the list in the order that I thought would best be accomplished. Instead of listening to Christmas music, as has been the custom since Thanksgiving, we spent the first part of the car ride chatting amicably. After a while, I realized that I had missed my turn. I told the boys that I had come the wrong way. The boys asked, "Does this mean we have to turn around?"
I answered, "No, it'll just take a little longer this way." I continued on, explaining that old habits had taken over, and I had come the way I used to go to school.
They boys asked a few questions and then said, "Would you show us your old school?" I was very quiet for a moment. I didn't want to take the twenty minutes out of our errand time, because we were on a set time limit and I knew we wouldn't be able to get it all done if we deviated from the plan.
After the moment was up, I decided to opt for flexibility. We went the extra mile (or two) and drove to see the off campus branch of the university that I attended the last two years of high school. (I am so thankful for the post secondary program that allowed me to earn college credits while I was in high school.) The boys enjoyed the sights. I was amazed at all the changes that had taken place in the years since I had been there.
We continued on, and I mentally shifted the list so that our shopping would be sure to get done. We stopped at Sam's Club first, instead of last. I then deviated from the list again, and went through the store backwards. I know to some of you, this may seem silly, for how can you go through a store backwards???? I am a person who like predictability, so I always go through the store in the same way, but today was about flexibility.
Not two minutes in the store, we bumped into Grandpa (my dad). If I would have not been going the "wrong" way, we might have missed each other completely. I think that especially because this was not planned, we were even more delighted to see him. We quickly made our purchases, and then sat down to a impromptu lunch with Grandpa. We had so much fun. The kids were happy all the way home, because their needs and desires were listened to . We had the extra and unexpected treat of special time with family.
The thing is, if I had stuck to my "schedule", I would have missed out on the joys that God had in store for us. Everything on the list would have been accomplished, but we would not have had the special time that was intended. I know that God has the greater plan, and even when mine is visibly written in my hand, it is in my best interest to allow him to take charge of my agenda!