A couple of weeks ago, after a beautiful snow fall, we invited over some people from parts of the world much closer to the equator than we are. We were going to play outside first–sledding, snow angels, fox-in-a-henhouse–and then go inside for hot chocolate and cookies.
But the kids did not want to leave the house. Coming from a warm climate and used to spending cold days inside, the sight of a meadow and woods covered with snow frightened them. Instead of seeing the incredible, bright beauty, and all the opportunities for fun, they saw a frozen, white wasteland, and recoiled from it.
While coaxing them into their snow pants and mittens, I realized how often I behave like that. Often, when the Lord calls me to go into a new situation or place, I recoil; it’s fine where I am, and it looks strange and potentially uncomfortable to go into a new place. Instead of seeing opportunities to serve, I see work I don’t want. Instead of seeing opportunities to learn, I see homework I don’t think I need. Instead of seeing a chance to bring glory to God, I see weariness and discomfort for me.
But just as I convinced the kids to let me bundle them up and bring them out the door, so the Lord gently leads me, maybe not where I initially want to go, but where it will be best for me to go. Whether that is in green pastures and beside quiet waters, or through the valley of the shadow of death, He leads me not only for my good, but also for the sake of His name (Psalm 23). That knowledge should enable me, by grace, to follow willingly, whenever and wherever He calls me.
The kids, by the way, had a great time.