Embracing Plan B

This was not my plan for my life.

With tears streaming down my face, the reality that I would be raising my kids as a single mom hit me.  I never planned on being divorced.

It is hard when life throws us curve balls. We don’t plan on the same negative answer showing up on the pregnancy test each month.  We don’t plan on a call from the doctor with a cancer diagnosis.  We don’t plan on losing a baby in the middle of a pregnancy.

Friends, most of us are not living our Plan A.

Sometimes life takes an unexpected turn and all our plans change in an instant.  We find ourselves along a new path that we never wanted.

I just finished reading Vivian Mabuni’s new book, Open Hands, Willing Heart.  I love what she says, “One of greatest challenges we face in living with open hands is being asked to accept life’s disappointments and embrace plan B.”

Embrace Plan B! 

These words stood out to me on the page. So much of life and learning to navigate life’s disappointments involves embracing Plan B.  I know this is not easy.

It is hard to trust God’s plans are good when we cannot see or understand why.  I think there is something special about hindsight.  Looking back, I can see how God used each one of my disappointments and heartbreaks to help another hurting heart. I know He wants to do the same for you.

Your greatest heartbreak will become your greatest ministry. 

I love how Vivian says it in her book, “Each heartbreak formed a bridge to connecting with others walking similar roads.”  I don’t know about you, but I want to allow my heartbreak to form bridges with other hurting hearts. 

I want to encourage you to vulnerably share your struggles and how God met you in your pain.  Someone else needs to hear your story.  

If I am complete honest, walking through a divorce was not the plan I had for my life.  Even though I would have not chosen that path for me, I can see how God is using my hurt and pain to help others. 

 I love that God specializes in redeeming our stories.  Today, I encourage you to embrace Plan B and watch God bring purpose to your pain. 

Love, Jodi

Cultivate as you Wait

I was getting impatient.

Sitting in the hard, uncomfortable chairs, my son and I were hoping his name would be called next.  Even with an appointment, we waited two hours at the DMV for his driving test this week.  The good news is he passed, but the bad news is that I kept complaining while we were waiting.    

Waiting is hard. 

In our fast-paced world where we can get information at the touch a button or a package delivered the next day, it is no wonder that we struggle with waiting. 

What if we looked at waiting with a different perspective? 

I just finished reading a book called Cultivate by Lara Casey.  She looks at life through the lens of gardening, and I loved what she shared about waiting.  Listen to this quote, “In the wait we are refined. Changed. Readied for whatever He has ahead for us.  Times of waiting are times of ripening.”

Have you ever taken a bite out of a piece of fruit that has not completely ripened?  I tried eating a peach that I thought was ripe; however, it was hard, juiceless, and tasted so bad that I had to spit it out.  It needed more time to ripen.

Just like fruit needs time to ripen, we need time to grow into the person God created us to be.

Growing involves waiting. Waiting for God to prepare us, teach us, and ready us for all He has planned. Instead of complaining about the wait, what if we saw the wait as a gift.  I love what Lara says in her book, “In the wait, cultivate.”

What do you need to cultivate as you wait? 

Lara gives us lots of action words for cultivate: “serve, nurture, nourish, prepare, encourage, improve, refine, pay attention, foster growth, loosen and break up hard ground, and care for what you’ve been given.”

Maybe you need to nourish your soul by reading God’s word regularly or perhaps you need to break up hard ground and identify a trigger that keeps you stuck.  Using the cultivate list above, I recommend picking an action word that you want to work on during your wait.

Friends, I know that waiting can be hard.  I am in a season of waiting on God’s timing for my book and there are times that I want to rush the process. 

But just like we cannot rush fruit to ripen, we cannot rush God’s timing in our life either.

When you begin to doubt His perfect timing, I want you to go to the store and buy your favorite fruit.  As you bite into it and taste all its goodness from waiting to be fully ripened, I want you to remember that God is doing the same for you as you wait to fully ripen!

Love, Jodi