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The Picture

I took this picture a little over two years ago on the day that my mate and I first went into university. We had just moved into a makeshift boarding house which had previously been a lodge, 2-star lodge at best. Our room, which was essentially to be our house, was a self-contained space that was about the size of my room back home. It had a large, musty wall-closet that faced the door, and a bathroom right next it. The walls were a sorry excuse for white walls, with different colored patches running across them, making the walls look as though they were purposely stained so as to keep secret all the things they had seen over the years. Two tiny single beds with bare mattresses spread over them lay on one end of the room. It was not a great place. But it was a place. And that was all we needed. We tried to make it as homey as possible, filling up the stuffy air with all our plans, hopes and dreams. It was to be our home for the next 7 years. The next 7 years, we said, would be life-changing. We already had our lives planned out: how we’d get there, where we’d be, who we’d be with. It was all set and laid out. Fast forward to two years later, my mate and I are not even in the same country anymore. We are both in different places than we thought we’d be, doing things we didn’t even think we’d be doing.

For a while, I thought that this was God’s way of speaking to me in euphemisms, telling me that all my dreams, everything I had ever hoped to be was in the bin. I thought that because things hadn’t initially played out the way I wanted them to, they would never play out at all. For a long time, I felt as though the ground that I had so firmly planted my feet had been yanked out from underneath me, and I was left clinging on to thin air. But I realized, with time, that I was still on course to be everything I had ever wanted to be, as was my friend. We were still enroute to our dreams, to being what we wanted to be, to leaving the marks we wanted to leave on the world. Our dreams were still very valid. We were just taking different routes there.

And you know what, maybe that’s life. Maybe life really does cross it’s legs, cup a cheek in it’s palm and burst out in laughter while we make plans for tomorrow. Maybe life was never meant to always play by the scripts we write for it. Maybe life was meant to flip a bird at the plans we make. Maybe things will not always pan out exactly the way we wish they would. Maybe our plans will often go to crap. Maybe you will wake up one day and not have a clue what you are even doing anymore.

But sometimes…sometimes it all just works out in the end. Sometimes things just seem to work themselves out. Sometimes things just unfold and unravel for our good. Sometimes the very odds that we thought were stacking up against us had been working in our favor the entire time. Sometimes, just sometimes, things just work out. They just do.

So yes, a lot of the plans you make will go to shit. A lot things will not pan out the way you want them. Perhaps that it is the time to remind yourself who you are: a child of the Ruler of the universe. Perhaps that is the time to remember that just because it is not going according to your plan, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t going according to God’s; just because your plans are in the mud, doesn’t mean that God’s plans are too. Perhaps that is the time to remind yourself that you are by no means God, that even though you have creative control over your life, you do not have control over the external circumstances that affect it, but God does. Perhaps that is the time to remember that wherever God leads you is better than any place you could have even gotten yourself to. Perhaps that is the time to believe, and hope, that one way or another, it will all work out.

Along the way, there will be a lot of uncertainty. That’s just life. But there is a beauty to uncertainty. Uncertainty means that we can be anything, that the possibilities are endless. Your dreams are still completely valid even when they seem to have fizzled out. You just have to be open to the possibility that there is another way to get there besides your way, that even when it all seems lost, it could all possibly pan out brilliantly in the end. The beauty to uncertainty is that it is a constant reminder that we are to let God be God. When it all seems lost, step back and let God be God.

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