Every journey I take begins long before I travel. It often starts days, sometimes weeks prior to setting foot on a plane.
This trip to Thailand started way back in August when I dropped my Grace off at college. It was hard on my heart leaving her in Nashville, knowing I wouldn’t see her for a long time. So my plan was to stay busy.
When I got the opportunity to help lead a trip to Thailand this November, I said yes. When I got the opportunity to go to Ecuador in October, I said yes.
When Steve got the opportunity to go to Kenya in the same week as my Thailand trip, I said yes, go for it.
Busy became the story of my life. Over the last few weeks, after moving, Steve and I have lived a whirlwind of craziness. There were weddings, birthdays, trips, meetings and then the big one, the engagement of our oldest daughter. She said yes.
In the midst of it all, we have been working on the new house (Steve does most of the repairs while I mow the lawn).
Then came this last Monday. It was the day before we were leaving on our overseas trips. Steve discovered a leak in the roof, so he asked me to go in to the attic and help him find the leak. Honestly, it wasn’t the way I wanted to spend my last day at home, but when he asked for my help, I said yes.
The plan was for Steve to go up on the roof with a hose, and I would crawl up into the dark, musty claustrophobic attic, and wait for the water to leak in. I would then tell him when I saw the leak so he could find the source.
While standing in the attic with my flashlight, I kept imagining the roof caving in. Every time Steve took a step on the roof, I could hear the creaking of the wood in the attic, and I was freaked out that something was going to break, and the roof would suddenly cave in. I felt out of control. However, nothing broke, and we found the leak. It’s an easy fix thank goodness.
In all the whirlwind of business this fall, and as I was getting ready for this trip to Thailand, and Steve was getting ready for his trip to Kenya, something started happening to me. I was feeling out of control. This feeling led to anxiety and anxiety led to fear. I started worrying that something bad might happen. After all, the world is a crazy place. Then I started worrying about our home. I worried that someone might forget to feed our wild birds, or the dog getting attacked by a coyote. I worried that the girls might get in a wreck while we were gone. I worried about my mom. I worried nobody would put the garbage out or get the mail.
That feeling of being out of control was getting to me.
To regain control, I started t become obsessed over the little things. I became one of those moms, and travelers, that wanted to vacuum the carpet, as they walk out of the door, so that I could see the vacuum lines in the rug. Some how, this was going to make me feel better. I had become one of those moms that felt the need to write down endless lists for my kids, to detail out everything, every scheduled event, but there were only six items on the list.
Take out Garbage
Get the mail
Keep House Clean
Don’t Burn Down the House
I never gave them the list.
Last night, I arrived into Bangkok, Thailand. I came in a day before the group was to arrive. This morning, I woke up in my hotel room in Bangkok, not really knowing what to do with myself, so I actually rested. Tonight, the group arrived, and we will spend the next 10 days in this beautiful country.
Before this trip, I started feeling it. I felt I had lost control. I had too many things to do. When I arrived in Bangkok, I let it go. I simply said to God, “I surrender.”
Then it happened. Peace came. I realized I have been trying to be in control of things I have no control over. I realized when I feel too busy, I feel out of control. When I feel out of control, I have a tendency to fear things.
The feeling of control is completely a false security, because in the end, at any time, a coyote could eat the dog, the roof could cave in if a big windstorm comes, and someone could get in a wreck.
We worry about things we can’t control. When life feels like a whirlwind, it’s easy to fall into the flesh, and let fear, doubt, and our anxiety take over.
Bottom line…Steve is in Kenya, and I am in Thailand, and we said yes to going. Now I get to see what God has lined up for us.
It’s true, I have no control over what can happen to us, or what might take place back at home. I have no control over certain things in this world that happen, or disasters that may come.
I just have to trust its all going to be ok and that God has the perfect plan as He has led us here.
If we let fear, doubt, anxiety drive our decisions, or if we let our need for control keep us from saying “YES” we may never experience the exciting things God has for our lives. We may never fully live the life he has for us. Our need for control can keep us from living the life He has planned for us.
I would rather live a little out of control, than live confined in my own fear and doubt.
It was good to have a day to think about these things, to truly let go of all the business, all the “things that could go wrong” and trust God. To say YES to what he has for me on this trip, and to start this journey, surrendered to His plan. I am excited to be here in Thailand and to continue this journey.
Have you ever let your need to be in control, or fear and anxiety keep you from going on a journey, or trying something new? Maybe you have always thought about going on a trip with Compassion. I invite you to check it out.
Then ask yourself, what is keeping you from saying YES. Maybe its not a Compassion trip, but something else. It could be the very thing that changes your life forever, and allows you to see and experience life as God has intended it for you.
Here is the link to some of our Sponsor tours.
But email me if you have questions!
Specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy
Life, Family, Faith and Travel...the life of a Jones
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Beautiful. I’m a closet control freak….but learning to walk in trust of God’s plan.