Through the tears

I’ve had a plan, all these years–a plan that carried me seamlessly from high school to college to grad school. I had planned for every contingency and merely had to adjust to the appropriate path whenever life arrived at a branch point. I graduated from college unmarried–I had a contingency plan for that. I had contingency plans I didn’t end up using–plans for if I didn’t get into an internship, for example.

But now I come to the end of my plans. Now I’m at the great intersection where hundreds of paths lie open before me–and I have no idea which one to take. I have no well-planned flowchart here, no rubric for deciding.

The future is a hazy mist fast approaching, and I feel lost in the fog.

A ray of light shone through on a frightening path. I shied away from it at first. Then God eased my fears and I felt my heart come into focus. This, this was what I wanted for my future. This was what I hadn’t even realized I’d been wanting all along. All my dreams aligned along this path and I was ready to follow it wherever it went.

What I didn’t expect was the “road closed” sign just beyond my view. I came upon it and had no choice but to turn aside.

Now, once again, I stand in the valley of decision–a broad vista of limitless paths. They bewilder me, they overwhelm me, none of them truly excites me. I want that path back.

I didn’t have, still don’t have a contingency plan. That future that so frightened me at first had come to excite me so. And now, every future I can envision seems drab and cold and lifeless.

I should be excited. The world is open to me. I have my whole life in front of me. I can do whatever I want to do. I can be whoever I want to be. Except, that is, that I cannot do or be that thing which I came to desire more than anything else in this world. That path is closed to me.

Abraham lay Isaac on the altar, believing that God would resurrect him. Any hope of resurrection has faded in my soul. Now, like Japheth’s daughter, I say, “If this is what you have vowed, put me on the altar–but first let me grieve what I have lost.”

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