Telling Stories

Last night, I went to visit a dear friend and hang out with her kids. You may remember them as my Tuesday friends. These days, we have to find creative time to spend with each other. This was how I came to be there at bedtime, and my favorite almost-four-year-old asked me to tell her a story.

She wanted a story about a little girl with her name who was a princess, and I began, spinning something quickly out of thin air. Really, I was quite pleased with myself. Spontaneity is not my gift. Just as I was building up to a nice happy ending, complete with moral and fireworks, she interrupted me. "No, that's not how it goes." She explained the way she saw the plot going from that part.

I continued.

As I went on, I tried to put my spin on it. Finally, as I tried to arrive at yet another happy ending, she sighed, exasperated and said: "Cara, you have to tell my story."

Well yes.

All of a sudden, I was thinking about how I talk to God sometimes. He is writing the story of my life, and I don't always like what is happening. Sometimes my prayers sound like my little friend: "You have to tell my story, God."

I think that I know the right way, the right thing, the right time. I'm going through My Utmost For His Highest  this year, and I read something last week (April 23 for those reading along) that challenged me to my core:

We have no right to decide where we should be placed, or to have preconceived ideas as to what God is preparing us to do. God engineers everything; and wherever He places us, our one supreme goal should be to pour out our lives in wholehearted devotion to Him in that particular work.

I had never thought about preconceived ideas as a privilege rather than a right. I don't have the right to expect God to shape my life into the image that I have created in my mind, but I am free to walk in the way that He has prepared for me. Perhaps as was the case last night, God's plans for my life will make a better story than anything I can come up with on my own.