We drove out of the parking lot of our church building and there he was. A little inchworm clinging to our mammoth 15 passenger van window. He was hanging on for dear life as we started driving down the road. How it would manage to survive the 35 minute drive on the highway was not on this tiny inchworm’s radar. But, he didn’t know it. For the moment he was hunkered down just for the next 30 seconds.
So I was a hero mom that day. As my children clamored for me to rescue this helpless little creature. I opened the window and reached my hand out to gently lift this little green being off of the windshield and out of the way of danger. I brought him inside and held him- placing him on a stray paper plate that earlier that morning had carried breakfast on it. And little Inchy cringed. He became a bundle of fear and froze. No longer crawling confidently he thrashed and wiggled as my hand led him to safety.
I carried him that way all the way home. And as he grew confident he started to crawl again across my fingers and across the paper plate over the toast crumbs. Mile after mile he was being hurled to another area of town at 60 miles per hour. But, he didn’t know it, all he knew was the strange fear and dread of harm.
Then it happened again. As I opened the van door and carried little Inchy over to the dirt in our mulch bed — he froze and then he wiggled and thrashed and did all he could to get away. He did not realize what was scaring him was actually saving him. This fearful unknown was actually a place of safety. I put him down and he inched away—having no concept that I was a hero to my kids that day and had saved his little life.
And the analogy struck me. How often are we like that little inchworm in the hand of Almighty God? How often is He working out His perfect will in us and doing that which is for our growth? He is doing all things well and for our good and for our soul’s safety.
But we are thrashing.
We are wriggling – seeking to escape.
We are trembling in fear and fighting against His providence.
And through it all He is bringing us to bigger and better places. Preparing green pastures for us.
He is keeping us from harm we did not know was there, surrounding us in the safety of His presence and all the while we are resisting. We are sure that all is fearful around us, sure that all is lost. When He is carrying us to a richer experience of knowledge of Him.
I am reminded of Jacob declaring “All these things are against me!” When God was actually bringing about the saving of a nation!
Charles Spurgeon says:
“There may be peculiarities in our case which look as if the Master had treated us with the harshness of a cruel one. There may be thorns of unusual sharpness in our pillow, but we must not dream that anger placed them there. We may be pining under a grief which we could not tell into another’s ear, but which makes our lot appear to be singled out and separated for peculiar misery, and hence it may seem just to conclude, “God has forsaken me; he has turned upon me in his fierce anger, and his loving kindnesses have failed forevermore;” but rest assured, my brethren, that the most plausible is not always the most true, and the most natural is not the most sure. God is and ever must be love to his people; let nothing disturb you in this belief: believe not the clearest inferences from his providence, but believe him, let outward circumstances say what they may.So today, do you tremble? Do you have forebodings of dread over what God is doing in your life? Do you question His goodness in the midst of trials? …
Our best days have been those which we thought our worst. Probably we are never so much in prosperity as when plunged in adversity. No summer days contribute so much to the healthy growth of our souls as those sharp wintry nights, which are so trying to us. We fear that we are being destroyed, and our inner life is at that moment being most effectually preserved. Oh, if we read them aright, all things are for us! We are a thousand fools in one to be caviling at the divine dispensation, and saying, “All these things are against me.”Jacob was wrong in every jot and tittle of what he said, and so usually are we.” Grace Gems
Remember little Inchy and the lesson he portrayed for us that day. Trust your Savior, the One who is your tender Shepherd and leave all in His hands.
He is faithful, He is worthy. He is good to His children. And He does ALL THINGS well!
It’s funny how when we are young we think we know it all. We have all of our plans and dreams and have our lives figured out. That’s the time we need to be learning as sponges from the older, wiser ones. Then when we become the older ones, all of a sudden we feel like we know nothing. Nothing at all. And then we are called upon to mentor those younger ones who know everything. Kind of ironic, huh?
Years ago a friend of mine and I were catching up after years. We were sharing stories of how we met our husbands, our families, etc. This friend and I had been committed to courtship and thought we knew exactly how the Lord was going to work things out for us. But, as we talked and shared she said something that has stuck with me for years now. She spoke of how the Lord took her out of her “box” and showed her he had a different plan. He brought her a man in an entirely different way than the way she had envisioned it.
And that brings me to the heart of the matter. Do you know that I have friends that met on e-harmony? Gasp! No Christian should be on e-harmony! Or so I thought! (Remember I lived back in the day before email–my husband and I had to talk on the phone- more gasps! So meeting your husband via an internet service? THAT’S outside of my box or used to be)
Through my health issues over the years the box I had myself in had to change in many ways because of the afflictions of mommy being sick. But, guess what? Sometimes there is so much more sanctification outside of that box!
I find in Christian circles that we can become prone to boxes of our own making and it beings to bed the question. Is this the Lord’s box or our own?
Lately, the Lord has taken us out of our comfort box and had us take a different path than homeschooling. After over 30 years in the homeschool world! Years ago I would have felt there is no way we would go this direction. But God has a way of showing you that it is not our plans but his.
What if God to show his glory, takes us down a different path? What if God to show his glory disappoints our dreams, changes our directions, takes us down paths we never thought we would go.
Will we still go?
Will we still glorify him and in faith be willing to go outside of our comfortable box and follow him?
Jesus did not fit the Pharisee’s box. He did not fit the Sadducee’s box. He did not even fit the Jew’s box. But, Jesus says “And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.”
So the question I am asking you today is, are there boxes you have put yourself in that maybe the Lord is calling you out of?
And here is the harder question: Can you love someone who has gone outside of your box?
Just food for thought….
My parents were pioneers. Back in the days of having to stay inside during school hours, limited curriculum available, having a backup plan in case the school system showed up at your your door. It was back in those days that my parents began homeschooling my sister and me. We were worried my grandfather would have a heart attack because you just. don’t. do. that. No one taught their children at home. I remember when we lived in Texas being a part of the “Austin T.E.A Party” where the homeschoolers rallied to make this way of education legal in the state. I loved being taught at home. And I was always going to teach my children at home.
And I did.
Fast forward many, many years (I won’t say how many) and I taught one, two, three, four, five, six children how to read. We did A Beka, Bob Jones, Christian Liberty, Mystery of History, Math U See, Saxon and Teaching Textbooks. We did my own rendition of the Robinson Curriculum, Satellite school, online classes and we did Alpha and Omega PACES. We did the years of just staying close to home and we did the coops, as well as the extra curricular activities. And we loved it.
We schooled our oldest son all the way through. When he graduated he had over 20 college credits already under his belt. He is now doing college online at home. My second son will graduate from homeschool this spring, Lord willing.
Homeschoolers are my people. When I walk into a homeschooling convention it is like coming home. It’s where I thrive.
So if you had told me years ago that I would be putting 5 of my children in a little Christian school nearby I would have dropped my mouth in unbelief. At first the thought of it made me quake with fear. I was a homeschooler. But, the more we prayed and pondered the more apparent it was that God wanted us to be considering this option. Oh, I battled. I battled that swinging between excitement and guilt, relief and fear. This isn’t what I had planned, it isn’t what I had envisioned.
But, then the Lord gave peace.
It was time.
It was right.
It was a new season He wanted us in.
And so this year we did the back to school shopping, we got the backpacks, lunch sacks and water bottles. We had the list of supplies like we had seen other kids have. Now my job consists in checking school papers when they get home, overseeing the packing of the lunches, homework, asking about the highlights of their day and remembering school functions. During the day I am home with my 3 year old and get special one on one time with him. He is my helper while I do the laundry, clean and cook. It’s a huge shift…a big change. But, for our family at this time, a good one.
But, guess what? I am not ready to give us the title of being a “Homeschool Mom” quite yet. Because remember my two big boys are upstair studying–even though I don’t see them much through the day, they are still there. And you know what else? I loved the description a friend gave to me the other day…it was something like this.
“The heart of home educating your children is having the freedom to chose the kind of education you think is best for your child.”
It’s really true. I may not be teaching Matthew his phonics rules, instead I have a helper (and what a sweet teacher she is!) teaching him. But, I am confident he is being taught a Christian worldview and has a God-centered education daily. I am still taking responsibility for his heart.
And so I am content and thankful to have this tremendous help in the educating of my children. With 8 children the needs are many, the duties are very diverse and this is good.
We don’t know what the future holds. I could be back educating my children at home one day again. But, for now this is the season God has for us. And if He is in it…then it is good.