Typically good things are "in between" something. Peanut butter and jelly are in-between two slices of bread, the cream in an Oreo cookie is in-between two cookies, and when you hug someone you have the love between you and that person smack dab in the middle of that embrace.
A lot of times the in-between's in life aren't as desirable as strawberry jelly or the cream in an Oreo. And come to think of it, when a person is 11 and 12, they are often referred to as being "tweens". Not a child, but not a teenager. Simply just somewhere in-between two stages of life. A lot of times a "tween" doesn't know what is going on in their world. There are so many physical and emotional changes and often they can't even recognize themselves any more.I guess in life we are technically always "in-between" something. There are a whole lot of events, experiences and changes that happen in-between the bookends of birth and death. There are times in life where we are certain what the probability of an event is going to be, and there are other times when we haven't a clue as to what is coming next.
One week ago I had the privilege and the blessing of being able to fly home for a week to visit my family and have them meet the love of my life. There were many hugs, kisses, conversations and some tears. It became surreal to have the blending of people from both of my homes; to know that one home and family was where I came from, and the other one was where I was led to by Gods hand.
When we came home to visit my family, one of those days we drove a few hours to Lanesboro, Minnesota for a family "day-cation". My mother was absolutely insistent that we all go tubing down the river together as a family. Jeremy had to remote into the office in SC and do some work, so he opted out of the adventure, but the rest of us marched down to the river, not exactly sure what to expect.
The tubing trip lasted about 2 hours, and in-between the launch into the river and ascension out of the water there were many events that took place. There were moments that were scary, like going right when we were supposed to go left, which landed us in a precarious, rocky part of the river where my brother Aaron tried to rescue my sister and I, only to realize that the current was far too strong and we just had to hope that everything was going to turn out okay (and it did!). There were also moments of pure relaxation as we let the current of the river pull us along at the speed that it wanted to, while we enjoyed the warm sun, the clear blue sky and the serenity of the outdoors. However, we never did know when the pace and the feel of the river was going to change, and when it did we quickly learned how to hang on tight and ride the river the way that the river wanted us to.
There was a bald eagle sighting, which was an answered prayer for my mother who had silently prayed that one would show up, but there were also scrapes and bruises from jagged rocks in shallow portions of the river. I felt like tubing down that river was one very obvious visual and analogy of our lives. As I sit in solitude with a cup of Snickerdoodle flavored coffee and hymns playing through my head phones, I am becoming fully aware of what I'm "in-between".
I am in-between a major life change of being single to being married. From working with seniors to possibly going back to school. I am in-between dreams coming true, new ideas and ambitions taking place and most importantly, in-between where God has me now and seeing where He will be moving me. Some of you who are reading this may be in-between test results, selling a home, funeral preparations, an argument with loved ones or maybe a change of understanding a concept that you've believed in for years. Or maybe you are in-between the death of a loved one and the possibility of a new spouse, in-between jobs or a weight loss goal.
There are moments where it's tempting to try to push myself out of the middle of the tubing adventure to the part of the trip where I can spot the landing destination, but in those moments I am reminded that I cannot force the pace of the current. All I can do is paddle in the right direction when needed ( as to not run into a large pile of rocks), and to let the current just pull me at the pace it wants to go.
Don't fight the current. When we fight the current, we become tired, stressed and powerless to do anything worth while in life. When we fight the current, we miss the eagle flying above our heads, the purple flowers in the oddest of places and the people who are on the journey with us. Instead let God push you along. Trust Him that He will pull you the right direction when you go the wrong way. Believe that He knows what you are capable of, and believe even more that He knows what He is capable of.
The in-between's of your life have purpose, despite the fact that it seems to have no substance other than frustration and confusion. Trust that God will allow you to see the eagle soaring across the sky when the time is right. In the mean time, just let go and let God move you in the way He sees fit.