First Christian Church | Pittsfield

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The Journey

08.08.18 | Michael's Corner | by Michael Ten Eyck

    With only a few exceptions, I usually enjoy driving.  Getting in the car and experiencing relief from the norm, as well as the change of scenery that our beautiful country affords, is quite pleasing to me.  This is true as long as I am not terribly rushed or stressed due to inclement weather.

    There is one drive, however, that I am not looking forward to in a few days.  It is not because it is excessively laborious or tedious, it is because of what it represents: change, finality, and trust on a new level for me. It is a drive I have wondered about for over 18 years, and now it is just a few short days away -- the drive to take my child to college.   It’s similar to the drive that took him to the first day of school. That drive was shorter, mind you, but many of the feelings were just the same.

    Many have taken this drive before me, some with very little trepidation and others nearly torturously. For some it offered a much needed respite, while for others it brought stress and worry.  Some were eager to load up the car and get on to bigger and better things. Others felt like it was a trek into the unknown. One thing is true for me, this drive is certainly not what I thought or expected it to be.  Life looks a lot different now than it did 18 years ago.

    But with all new adventures and changes, perspective is of crucial importance.  This is an opportunity for us as believers to tap into the great strength of our Loving Eternal Father’s promise.  

    Isa 41:10, 13
    10 fear not, for I am with you;
    be not dismayed, for I am your God;
    I will strengthen you, I will help you,
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand...

    13 For I, the Lord your God,
    hold your right hand;
    it is I who say to you, "Fear not,
    I am the one who helps you."   ESV

    There are several truths that help me, and anyone who has or will take this drive or one like it.

    We are not alone on this drive.  A sovereign God will “hold our right hand…”

    Life is going to happen and needs to happen.  Good and tough times will come, but in those times refer to the first point.

    God’s love for our kiddos is far greater than ours.

    Our children were, and are, God’s first.

    Because of these points, we can rejoice and be glad in the midst of transitions, challenge, and change.

    Our outlook can significantly impact our journey.  You can choose to be anxious or choose to trust and be thankful.  The latter opens the door for peace, while the former robs us of joy.  

    Challenging times are good classrooms, and sometimes we need to graduate to a bigger classroom.

    Tears of sorrow can also be tears of joy.  

    Never quit praying.

    My prayers will be for all making similar drives in the next few weeks.  These are wonderful and needful journeys that will be the first of many.

    Loving you all,
    Michael