God’s plan is always better than ours.
I saw the appeal for teachers for the Pioneer Clubs on Facebook on a Monday night. My friend led the program, and she desperately needed help, but I’m not a religion teacher. Surely this wasn’t God’s plan.
Surely there was someone more qualified.
I argued this point with God. Besides, I had plans on the first night of class, so it couldn’t be me destined to teach that class. Tell you what; I bargained with the big man upstairs; if the ad is still in the Sunday bulletin, I will talk to Amy about it. But I’m not the person, so you need someone else to step up.
Did you know that bargaining rarely works with God?
Yeah, but I had my hopes. But there I stood a few weeks later as six adorable, innocent little girls looked at me with expectation.
And the truth is I felt inadequate. Indeed a soccer mom, a home-schooling mom, or a pastor wife mom would be much better at this than me. At the time, the keyword in that sentence was mom, and that was not me.
But I committed, so each week, I asked God to give me the words and to fill the gaps I might create.
It came to me one night that maybe my not being a mom was the reason God called me. My singleness wasn’t a topic of conversation with the second graders, but it’s no secret. Maybe one of these sweet children will one day need to know that it’s okay to be single and going on fifty—not that they could fathom being fifty. Years from now, one may struggle with being single in a married church or childless in a mom population, needing to know there can be life, love, and happiness without a husband or children.
I’ll be honest. Singleness is something I have never wanted to claim.
My dreams always included a husband and a family. When my two younger sisters got engaged before me, I railed at God about the unfairness of it all. My sisters became incredible moms, and I never once held it against either of them that they got married before I did. I love all of their kids (and my brother’s two also) and relish my auntie role.
Somewhere in my early forties, I realized God had another road for me to travel. God had a crucial role for me and held my hand the whole way. He showed me how he had worked in my life along this road. He filled me with the knowledge that his plan is always perfect, even when difficult and heartbreaking.
And part of that plan included second-grade girls.
I often wondered if I really taught them anything, but I kept in mind that showing up, loving on them, and listening to them was part of the job description. I trust that God used my participation to minister to them somehow. The night one of the moms told me her daughter loved coming because she really admired me made my heart sing!
No, most of life is not what I would have chosen, but God has his plans. And one thing I’ve learned is that God’s plan is always better than mine.