"All the world's a stage, and the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts."

- William Shakespeare

Monday, May 16, 2011

let go

Growing up, I was that weird kid that went along bike paths and soccer fields picking up snails and putting them out of harm's way. Worms got the same treatment... and pretty much any other critter that didn't know exactly how dangerous a place their prime tanning location was.

This morning I was walking from my car to the front door and I noticed a snail in my path. So, like old times, I bent down to pick it up and put it in a safer place. But this snail seriously didn't budge. I'm almost certain he sprouted hands and clung to his spot for dear life.

I tried to uproot him for a good three or four minutes but eventually gave up, stepped to the other side of the path so not to accidentally squish him and made sure to tell everyone within a ten meter radius to avoid the snail near the flower pot.

And strangely enough, this occurrence sort of mirrors something that's been on my mind for a little while now.

Sometimes I think I'm a lot like that snail. I'll feel something gently tugging at me, urging me to let go of whatever I happen to be clinging to at the time, but I don't wanna. Just ask my parents - I was a very stubborn child. I say 'was' as if that's changed, but, let's face it... it hasn't.

Little did the snail know, the reason why I was trying to uproot him was so I could put him someplace better. He was just focused on the path ahead of him, while I could see the entire street.

That got me thinking... when I feel that gentle nudge to release my kung-foo death grip on things like plans for the future, boy troubles, money and school worries... well, maybe I should try letting go.

I could name a thousand and one experiences I've had when I feel like God is nudging me to let go of my plans because he has something better in mind, but I'll refuse and hold on even tighter. I tell him how much I really like where I think my plan is going - how awesome it'll be when it comes to fruition and then I'll plug my ears and ignore anything he has to say after that.

I could also name a thousand and one experiences I've had when I did let something go, surrender control and find to my astonishment (every time) that God's plan really was better.

So lately I've been asking myself - why do I refuse what I know is best for me? Not only are God's plans better for my life, but they're also better for my sanity. I'm well aware that resistance isn't futile (hello? free will), but it's definitely exhausting. That snail was fighting me the same way I sometimes fight God's hand in my life and it takes so much more energy than just saying, "Okay, you win - where do you want me to go?"

And the best part is that the relief doesn't stop at the surrender - it stays with you. There's a comfort that comes with knowing that you're right where God wants you to be.

The moral of the story is obviously -- don't step on snails. If you didn't get that from everything I've just said, then I don't know what's wrong with you...

Just kidding.

Really, I just wanted to think aloud for a little while and I'm pretty sure I've now accomplished that. So I'm gonna go. (Can you tell I have no idea how to end this post? Can I use my new found surrendering of control 'lifestyle' as an excuse...?)

I'll just end it like this:

Keep it real!