Saturday, December 4, 2010

Best Laid Schemes of Mice and Moms...

I didn’t run today until 4:15. Crazy. Such is life, though – some days it takes awhile to get moving due to things beyond one’s control.

I haven’t been running with my iPhone lately, preferring to have company with my own thoughts, and take the time to talk to God. Today, I took the phone since my kids needed to be able to reach me, and rather than play my usual running mix, I put it on random.

I never cease to be amazed at what happens when I do that. I skip a few songs, typically, but try not to do too many. More times than not, it seems that I hear exactly what I need to hear, and maybe there are some things I need to think about.

The mix was not as fast paced as I like to run to, but when I listened to the beat today, I realized it was right where I needed to be. First song was “Then,” and it just made me smile. A sense of both hope and being very happy with where I am right now just washed over me. It wasn’t long until two songs in a row came on that made me think of a friend of mine. One because he is the one singing it. The other, because he introduced me to this particular band’s music.

Ironically, or not, this friend emailed me yesterday to tell me what has been happening in his life over the past few months. We went out a few times over a year ago, and he breezed in and out of my life in many ways, but we somehow managed to remain friends. But the main crux of the email is that he became friends with a woman who was pregnant, but had been cast off by the baby’s father… somewhere along the way they fell in love, and he decided he wanted to be this baby’s father. The baby was born on Monday.

When I got that email, I just couldn’t help but smile. I’ve listened to him and paid attention to his crazy antics for the past few years, and had decided that he was happy being a single man who is married to his music. I’ve sensed that in some ways he has been lost – not really knowing what he wanted. For the first time, as I read his email yesterday, I sensed that suddenly he has found something to ground him. And that he’s happy. Everything I read felt just right.

So, I smiled when those songs came up, and I started praying for him, and the two new women in his life.

Then, the next song that came up was “How Great Is Our God” by Chris Tomlin. And my heart started to burst. It was gorgeous outside, and after thinking about my friend and his decision, it just seems divinely inspired. And on top of that, I felt the same way as I was running. How Great is Our God! I started thinking about the past few years and thinking about all the things that I’ve wanted, but didn’t get…. And the thought on many of those was “Thank GOD!”

How often is it we think we know what’s best, but find out that we’re not right?

Next was “I Can Only Imagine” by Mercy Me. And I was blown away. Ok, God… what are you trying to tell me today? My pace picked up and the song was central – wasn’t even thinking about the run itself… just opening myself up to whatever God seemed to be wanting to show me today.

I skipped a few songs, but it seemed that each song title made me think of someone – whether it was someone I dated along the way, or just a really good friend.

And then the music settled into “All That We Let In” by Indigo Girls – Hmmm…

You may not see it when it’s sticking to your skin

But we’re better off for all that we let in.

See those crosses on the side of the road

Tied with ribbons in the median

They make me grateful I can go this mile

Lay me down at night and wake me up again.

I smiled. I had been running. And had just run several miles. And was beyond grateful that I could do that. More than that, though, the words meant something different than they had previously.

Crosses on the side of the road… for some reason today that was about past relationships, or even potential relationships, that didn’t work. Or relationships that ran their course. People who came into my life for a season, but aren’t as central as they used to be for whatever reason.

How odd is that? Yet I’m grateful for each person who has been in my life for whatever length of time, or in whatever form, because they helped bring me here. To a place that is happy. Deep down in the gut happy.

Odd... would never have thought about this song that way before.

Finally, the run ended on “Now and Forever” by Carole King.

Now and forever, you are a part of me…

Sheez… I literally laughed out loud. This almost seems hokey, but it seemed that today’s run was about honoring the past. And recognizing that God has had a wonderful hand in that past. The past that has brought me to today, where God’s hand is definitely still present.

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