I am sure you are all wondering what in the world this is all about. Well, I had the most interesting lesson today.
Last week while we were in Chattanooga, Jenna used "her money" to buy a kite from the local toy store. Now, it's been YEARS and I do mean many, many years since I've flown a kite. Living in Tennessee, I guess there's not really many days that would provide the climate for flying a kite. I think both Steve and I were looking forward to giving it a whirl. Jenna must have also been excited because she's driven us crazy ever since we got back to get this kite flying. Yesterday, we took the kite with our friends, the Millsaps, to the local Spring Hill park. Put the thing together and discovered there wasn't really a good place to fly it.
Today, the wind was up and we decided to head to the church parking lot about an hour before evening activities and see if we couldn't get this thing to fly. At our church, there is a back parking lot that is completely empty and mostly free from trees, poles, wires etc. We got the kite out and let out the string and waited for the wind to take it. It didn't get up in the air immediately, so we walked across the parking lot, waited for a gust of wind and then took off at full speed, running against the wind, letting out the string waiting for the wind to catch it. Time after time we tried. Finally, we decided that I would sit in the back of the truck bed with the kite while Steve drove into the wind hoping that it would catch and the kite would go up. Obviously, that didn't work, not to mention it being dangerous (and funny to boot!).
But I wasn't ready to give up. I was determined to get this dang kite up for the sake of my child OR BUST! So, back and forth I go, running against the wind trying everything I know to do to get this kite up in the air. After a dozen tries (or more), I was extremely frustrated and a bit disappointed. Then I started praying..."Come on God...just a little wind. Do this for my little girl. I know You care about these little things. I know You are there. Do this to show HER You can." And I'd take off running against the wind again. Over and over and the kite never would get more than my height up in the air. Finally, I thought, "OK, just one more try...this is it." And...nothing. I started winding up the string and felt a gust of wind coming. But I was tired. I was tired of running against the wind and trying and trying everything in my power to get this kite flying just to see it fall to the ground.
And then it hit me. STAND STILL. So I did. I just stood there with one arm hanging to my side, one straight out in front of me and watched. And to my amazement...the kite started going up. Up and up and up as high as the kite had been all day long! I couldn't hardly believe my eyes.
That's when I realized it. It's the same with me and God. I am determined to do something that I want to do. Determined to make things go my way. I run against the wind watching whatever it is that I'm trying so desperately to do fall flat time and time again. But yet, I am not going to give up. I just keep fighting against the wind...until I'm too tired to fight anymore. And that's when I am quiet enough to hear God saying to me, "Just. Stand. Still." And in that quiet moment, when I have exhausted myself doing it MY way, I stand still and watch in amazement as God takes my kite high in the air. Higher than I ever was able to get it. Higher than it ever went when I was trying all my tricks.
It was as clear to me in that moment that the kite was flying, as ever in my life. If I will just stop trying so hard and be STILL, God will bless me more than I can ask or imagine and send my kite airborne. But I have to learn to be still and to quit trying to run against the wind. Sometimes the only way to hear is to be still.
The kite never did really get all the way into the air, just as in life things don't always end up as we imagined they would be. But Jenna didn't know the difference.
To her...the kite flew.
And that was all that mattered.