I really wanted to title this post "The Gift of Foresight" but didn't want you to think I meant some kind of psychic powers or something. What I mean is I really do think having foresight can be a gift. Take my son for example. He's 3 and we're still working on potty training (although recently we've had some major break-throughs!!). You may remember this blog post, where I mentioned the difficulties we've been having. Recently, I pondered a loud to God, "Why can't he just understand that doing his business in his pants, though it may seem easier, takes much more effort?" I realize that foresight is not something children really get until they are older, which is why parents have to be so patient. And when they still don't get it we have to be even more patient. It takes a level of patience similar to the way God is with us. He reminded me about this while I was talking with Him. Foresight. It's something many of us, especially in American culture, struggle with.
Why can't we understand that taking the easy route doesn't always lead us in the right direction and often ends up being more trouble then it's worth? We see this in finances. A. Lot. We spend money we do not have because we lack foresight. Too often we make decisions without much foresight. We can't look past the now to down the road and foresee the consequences.
Me: Alex, why did you go potty in your pants?
Alex: I dunno.
Me: Was it because you didn't want to stop playing long enough to use the restroom?
Me: Are you playing and having fun right now?
Alex: Because I went potty in my pants so now I'm dirty.
Me: And you can't play while you get cleaned up huh?
Me: Wouldn't it have been easier to just use the potty?
Alex: Yeah but I wanted to play. But don't worry momma I will next time...I pwomise.
This is a conversation we've had many, many, times. It's not dissimilar to the conversation I've had with God upon occasion.
God: Katie, why did you do that?
Me: I dunno.
God: Was it because you didn't want to stop playing?
God: Are you having fun now?
Me: Because now I'm a mess.
God: Wouldn't have been easier to do things My way.
Me. Yes but I wanted to do things my way. But don't worry Papa, I'll do it Your way next time.
Foresight. If only we could look past the now and the temporary and see what God has in store for us versus what the consequences of our actions would be on our own. I think it really has to be a gift from Him sometimes. It's hard when we're in the zone, doing whatever it is we're doing and having a great time. But when the time comes, it's always better to get up and go to Him before we find ourselves in a big, ugly mess....Trust me.
And just like I desperately want Alex to avoid those messy situations, I think He's even more desperate that we avoid our messes. The beautiful thing about the gift of foresight is that He's just as willing to give it to us as we are in need of it. And oh, how He is so faithfully patient with us. Praise Him.