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Connecting the Dots

May 10, 2016

How is God connecting the dots in your life into what may seem an unexpected story? Read on as Rebecca Stuhlmiller offers a helpful perspective.

 

Elisa

 

 

Connecting the Dots

By Rebecca Stuhlmiller

 

When I was a teenager, my best friend and I drew pictures of our dream lives: the boys we wanted to marry, what our houses would look like, and how many kids we’d have. Even as a young adult, I expected to have enough raw talent to create the picture of my life, inside the lines, with shades of my choosing.

 

Instead, my years have resembled a connect-the-dots picture, the kind of awkward "masterpiece" I could create as a child. I could craft an image by counting and drawing a (relatively) straight line. One to two. Two to three. Three to four. A fish! A house! A tree!

 

Dot 22 … married a guy I barely knew.

Dot 25 … gave birth to my first of three daughters.

Dot 28 … surrendered my sorry, playing-the-church-game life to Jesus.

Dot 30 … divorced the guy I barely knew.

Dot 33 … married a farmer with four kids.

Dot 40 … spoke in front of my first audience.

Dot 50 … sold the farm, joined the cancer-survivor club, embarked on a two-year missions experience.

Dot 53 … moved back to the US.

 

Nothing close to the picture I drew as a teenager. So many unexpected dots!

 

Transition has become a familiar picture for me, one who has called four countries, twelve states, and thirty-five dwellings, home. Many dots that don't always feel connected. 

 

Instead of waiting around for the next dot to appear, I try to live with intention as I connect with family and friends because I have learned that the next dot in line is not guaranteed.

 

A long-ago shepherd and king wrote, “The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You support my lot. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me." (Psalms 16:5-6) He saw that God drew a good picture of his life.

 

And God has connected all the crazy dots to draw a good picture of my life.    

 

My Artist knows when and where he’ll move his sharpened pencil —up, down, or sideways. I want to nudge it along in the direction of the next dot: an image of my own. But I can’t see the big picture. I can only see the morning sunrise over the city across Puget Sound. I can live in transition, anticipating the next dot, and watching for what God is drawing.   

 

 

 

Rebecca Stuhlmiller is a writer, international speaker, wife, mom, and gramma who lives near Seattle, Washington. Her mission, based on Colossians 1:28-29, is to help women create room to love God and love people. Check out her speaking topics at http://rebeccastuhlmiller.com.

 

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