Laura has a definite love for 'ditches'. Whenever she hears the sound of running water hitting suds she comes to investigate. If 'ditches' actually seems to be a possibility, she's immediately assessing which kitchen chair would be the easiest to extract from its current position and push over to the sink. After all, helping with 'ditches' is one of her favorite things.
When the thought of having two extra hands helping me by splashing suds, taking the clean dishes I've put in the rinse pile and returning them to the water, pourings sudsy water across the counter and down the front of the cabinets, and in general, spreading the suds as far as the water will take it, I interfere with her efforts with a stern "No. I don't need any help today." However, Laura isn't one to take such things so literally. She will continue to maneuver that chair towards the sink. Another "No" from me is inevitable. She ignores it once again. I move in to what I refer to as my blocking position. I'll stand right in path of the chair, preventing her from going any further in her chosen path. Not one to give up lightly, she'll quickly lay out another plan and the chair will veer to one side in an effort to get around her roadblock. Quickly I move over, hoping to thwarth her plans once again. Just as quickly she plans a new path and the chair veers once again.
After tiring of this, I'll just sit down in the chair making it impossible for her to move. The first few times I did this she stopped. Dejectedly she'd walk away, shoulders slumped and head hanging. But this didn't last. One day she hit on a new plan. As soon as I sat on the chair she was back at the table getting another chair! Diligently she pushed the new chair towards the sink, making sure to go around the now immovable one in her way. After laughing quietly to myself and marveling at her determination, I got up, sternly said "No" once again and told her to put the chairs away. Once again the sagging shoulders and hanging head told me that her sadness was complete. Slowly she put the chairs back, came over to hug my leg and then quietly headed to the family room to find a playmate.
As I was contemplating the determination of my daughter one morning it struck me that the Lord is a lot like her. He'll want us to go along with his plan for us. After all he's told me time and time again that "I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11) However, we tend to block his plans with our own desires and selfishness. Wanting things done our way and not his. We stand in his way, blocking him from blessing us which means that we then must step over in to his new path, created to help get us back to where his ultimate goal for us lies. Sometimes we do just sit and muddle for awhile, thinking we are doing the right thing. I'm sure the Lord sighs and waits, planning a new route for us. When he thinks we might be ready he starts again, attempting to redirect the path around our misconceptions. Hoping that this time we'll make it where he wants us to go. Loving determination. Our heavenly Father has so much patience with us. So much love. And he'll pursue us with even more determination than my daughter uses to get to the 'ditches'.
Isn't it nice to know? :)
Proverbs 3:5-6. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways ackowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.