I was on my way to CVS to take the picture (because I had a coupon - why are they so expensive???), and "something" told me to go to the CVS 10 minutes away, not the CVS 3 minutes away. What did I do? I went to the CVS 3 minutes away. It was closer on a hot and humid day and I figured my hair could only take so much.
I got there and waited 5 minutes before a sales associate asked what I needed - only to be told the machine was not working. I stared at said sales associate for about a minute (no awkwardness there), said, "Thank you", and went back to the car to head to the other CVS - now 13 minutes away.
I was perturbed for two reasons. First, because I called the day prior to confirm they indeed took pictures and I could come in at any time of day to take the picture (would have been a good time to say, "Usually so, but the machine is broken"). Secondly, because I didn't listen to the "something" that had me initially think of the CVS down the street, not the CVS around the corner.
I had a striking thought when I mumbled to myself, "I should have followed my first mind." Have you ever said this to yourself? As soon as I said it, I retracted it and said, "Sorry Lord, obviously what I should have said was, 'I should have followed the Holy Spirit's leading'." Because, truth be told, I DID follow my mind and it caused me to end up where I did not need to be!
I think in my day-to-day "goings on" I tend to lean more on my understanding than the Holy Spirit. To be sure, I have my better days - but days like that one cause me to remember I still have a long way to go in fully submitting everything over to God. Including a trip to the store.
It is so easy to say, "I've got this ..." to things we deem are insignificant to God when the reality is, He wants to be involved in it all. Every seemingly mundane and minute detail. When we call Him Lord, He expects us to allow His Lordship to rule over every aspect of our lives. Not just the impossible ones. He wants us to submit our "first mind" to His leading and guiding.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." (Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV)
Lean not to our own understanding? My only understanding was attempting to avoid having bad hair on a photo that will last for 10 years! In all my ways submit to Him? Only after "my way" didn't work!
How many times am I going to walk down this crooked path?
Had I trusted that ultimately He makes my path straight I would have encountered a more pleasant and fruitful outcome ... not frustration.
When I reached the other CVS, I still had to wait, but after that everything went smoothly (well, aside from the fact that I had bad hair by that time). The associate was very nice, allowed me to retake my photo 4 times (after the 4th take and I still wasn't satisfied I decided to stop harassing the poor guy). I had loving adorable daughter with me and he entertained her when she got upset because she couldn't take a picture too. He even warned me before I left that I hadn't secured the pictures in my purse well enough so they wouldn't fall out unbeknownst to me! Can't ask for better service than that.
A few days after the CVS photo debacle, I realized loving adorable daughter needed new shoes (how their feet grow overnight I will never understand). I felt the Holy Spirit directing me to a particular store and I was determined not to fail this test once again - even though I have been disappointed in the past by this store. I was pleasantly surprised at the deals available and they had exactly what I was looking for. I felt good that this time, I listened correctly!
I need to continue allowing Jesus' Lordship to reign over every area of my life: planning a conference or planning dinner, which school to attend or which store to patronize. It all matters to God because He is the one directing our paths to His intended destiny for our lives. So pray with me as I continue to yield myself to His leading more, and that I truly trust even in the 'little" and "inconsequential" things.
Just Around the Corner,