26 years… that’s the amount of time that I have sat here on this giant green planet called earth. When I look back on my high school days even even college days I had imagined that at this age I would have a pretty clear path of what I was doing with my life, but it seems the verse I have tattooed on my wrist continues to show it’s truth. משלי XVI:IX aka Proverbs 16:9 says:
In his heart a man plans out his ways but the Lord guides his steps.
When I was younger I had imagined that when I was 26 or perhaps even younger I would be well set into a career, found my wife and probably pretty well settled down. As it turns out I am 26 and can’t really say I have any of those things checked off my list. It’s hard to trust the Lord in it. I know the Lord is guiding my steps as I trudge thru the everyday, of the life I never imagined having. And in all reality it isn’t a bad thing, I am not saying this is worse then I expected things would be, just different.
I am trying to view it all like I would a hike. I can think of countless times climbing mountains that myself or someone with me thought we say the final peak and were tempted to cut the trail a bit. We may have planned out our little shortcut but when we started to go for it we quickly realized that the top wasn’t where we thought, or our chosen route wasn’t as much of a shortcut as we thought.
I think that is a lot of what this verse is trying to talk about. We may have in our minds the best plan of approach to something but G-d knows where the real finish is. In fact the little detours G-d often leads us on brings us to some pretty amazing views we never would have experienced otherwise.
The other thing that strikes me as I write is that though the verse seems to say G-d may change our plan or direction sometimes there is nothing wrong with us having a plan. The verse doesn’t condemn the man for ‘planning out his ways’, it simply says ‘but the Lord guides his steps’. It’s not even that the Lord corrects them. He just kinda nudges us a different direction every now and then. Don’t fight the nudges, they aren’t bad things, they are just part of life. A life that if your anything like me has been nudged a bit differently then you had in your head in high school.