Physical distance provides clarity and objectivity.
I wrote that earlier this week, and I’ve found it to be true, even in the three short weeks I’ve been here in Chiang Mai. Yes, being away from everyone I just spent seven semesters of college with is a challenge. Being away from my family and my best friends and all that is familiar and comfortable is difficult.
But it is also providing me with clarity and objective thoughts. I am reminded of how much I am truly am loved and how incredibly blessed I am to be here and how precious community is, but I have also been graced with the insight that comes from distance, both distance of time and space. And it is beautiful.
I’m seeing that maybe what I had perceived as failures in my past might actually be successes.
Maybe God is taking situations in which I felt like I had completely messed up everything and turning them into examples of his grace. Maybe God is taking moments in which I did not act like a child of His and using them to demonstrate his power. Maybe God’s ways are higher than my ways and maybe his thoughts are higher than my thoughts. And maybe, just maybe, he is working all things together for my good.
Okay, so it doesn’t sound like any big discovery, but it took moving halfway around the world for me to see it.
I worried for months about a situation that happened last Fall. A couple weeks ago, it finally dawned on me that God knows what he’s doing even when I don’t know what I’m doing. He has a plan I will never hope to understand.
I can trust him. I can depend on his provision even when I’m not exactly the person I want to be. Because if God’s power and love stopped when I failed, would he even be God?
Granted, there are usually unfortunate consequences when we make decisions that don’t reflect God’s best for us. I know those all too well. But God’s love is not reserved for saints, or people who think they are saints. It overflows for sinnners like you and me. We once were lost, but now we’re found, and we keep striving for that which is God’s best because we know, in the end, it will satisfy us in ways no sinful choice ever could. We are blessed beyond measure by our patient God, and when we mess up, we try again.
Because, ultimately, God is good. He turns failures into successes, after all.