I’ve hit the half-way mark in my eighteenth year.
Did it meet my expectations?
Uh, no. Big no. My little-kid self assumed that when one turns eighteen, one magically becomes an adult, assumes adult responsibilities with ease, has everything figured out in life, and does big things.
Maybe that happens to everyone else… but it sure didn’t happen to me.
Looking back, I see that much of this slice of life was spent just trying to get the hang of life as a graduated adult with work instead of school, and a whole lot of things to figure out. I did a lot of journaling. And crying. And laughing. And praying. And thinking. And writing. And smiling. And farming. Lots of little things filled my life – and joy – to overflowing.
I had big plans to write my novel, take writing classes, and probably stop mixing feed for the cows on the family farm. (No offense, cows…) I wanted an orderly lifestyle with few or no complications. Ha.
Instead, I grew to love the crazy diversity that defines this season of my life. I fell
mostly in love with my job on the farm and decided to keep it. I got to take on some babysitting. I didn’t take many writing classes. I didn’t make as much progress on my novel as I had naively planned. I got shoved into situations that stretched me…
But am I happy with how the last six months have panned out?
They most certainly did not go according to my tidy, boring little plans. Oh, no. Instead, they gave me the opportunity to experience a huge, crazy mash-up of joy, pain, humor, irony, sacrifice, stumbling, disappointment, failure…
And fulfilment beyond my wildest dreams.
When God starts to change my plans, my first response is to wail, No, God. You don’t understand. This is how it’s supposed to go. Really.
To which He gently, but firmly, responds, Ah, but this is how it must go. Just wait and see… and soon you’ll know why.
I’m not at the end of my story, but I can already see some of the blessings that have come because God turned my plans upside down. I’m not holding so tightly to the security offered by things, plans, circumstances, or even people anymore. I’m not as scared of trying new things. I want Him more.
And I’m actually excited to hand Him the pen for these next six months – for the rest of my life – and to watch in breathless anticipation as He continues to write my story for me.
What are some things that you learned in your eighteenth year of life? Or are learning? Or wish to learn?
Photo credit: Jonna @thru.t.h.e.lens