What’s Up?!

What’s up?! Chico is peeking around the corner to see what his future holds. Is she staying home or going somewhere? Putting on shoes? Yep, that means I’ll be without her for a while. Just opening the fridge door? OK good, she’s staying home. Nothing to worry about. In either case, maybe I’ll take a nap.

Almost 16-year old Chico knows my habits. He’s used to my coming and going but he regularly investigates what I’m up to. He likes to know what’s happening, what to expect. Don’t we all?!

As a 20-something there were days I had no clue what I was doing or what I wanted to do.  After 2 years of study at the University of Manitoba with an earned associate’s degree in education, should I pursue a teaching position (Yes, there was a teacher shortage!), move west to Alberta for a year of Bible school, or….?  Perplexed, a bit anxious and feeling very awkward, I knocked on my pastor’s door.  Surely this man of God would calm my fears and tell me what to do.   Nada!  Nope!  After listening to my timid explanation about the reason for my visit, he prayed for my decision-making process and then announced, “And, Jane, the Good Lord has also given you a brain!”

What?!  Seriously!!  OK then, ask for divine guidance, use your brain and make a decision.  So that’s what I did.  That decision took me 900 miles away from home for studies at a small denominational Bible school.  And what a year it was!  Talk about spreading my wings and flying!  Bible and theology courses stimulated new understanding.  New and healthy friendships blossomed (still connected with some).  Opportunities to tour with the choir and women’s trio emerged.  I sang soprano!  Don’t forget how introverted I was back then:)  It was clearly a life-changing experience.

And a teaching position?  That happened the next year at a country school near my hometown.  It was a two-room prairie school house.  My assignment was teaching 10 students in grades 1 through 4.  It was another memorable year but that’s a story for next time.

Faced with decisions about the future?  Multiple paths from which to choose?  Ah, not easy, is it?  But here’s what I know.  My efforts to carefully discern a path that matches my abilities, interests, and heart’s desire has always proved fruitful.  And I’ve not been shy about sitting down with trusted peers and coach-type persons in my life.  Throughout my educational journey, professors played a significant role by reflecting with me about possibilities and listening to doubts and misgivings.

Call it intuition if you like, but I believe that within each of us is a space resonating with what’s best for us at any juncture.  Getting quiet and reflective, listening to the silence, and living the questions is important.  Patience, my friend, patience!  Stay awake to what’s happening around you and within.  Perhaps this trusting stance will develop into a habit so that peeking around the corner into the future won’t be quite as scary.  Take a lesson from an old dog – Chico that is!