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Stop the ready and start the go


I love hearing that. Especially the “Go!” That’s my signal to jump into action, begin the race, dash  into the scavenger hunt.

Actually I like it when someone else says Go. Otherwise I would spend all my time in the ready-set. Preparing for action. Settling into the start position, re-tying my shoes, adjusting my waist band, etc. etc. But when someone holds the start gun aloft or raises the whistle to his lips, I know the Go! is coming. That’s when I must stop the ready and start the go.

This is just easier when someone else says Go! Maybe that’s why I like playing in games so much. I completely delegate the Go.

For sure, there are Go moments in life not just in games. These are a bit more tense. The “I do” moment. The “It’s a girl” moment. The “turn the ignition” moment. Where a switch is flipped and going back is not an option. I prefer the automatic go. Choosing the go is a whole lot tougher.

But choosing not to go has its consequences. When you’re forever preparing and never going, things get backed up. Just like being stuck in traffic, cars are coming behind you, making it more and more difficult – perhaps impossible – to turn around.

Now conscientious is good. Studying your options is important. But at some point in the back-up just heading out must take precedence over map-reading.

Much of life – though to commuters I know this may not ring true – we are not stuck in traffic or readying and setting before the go. Most of life we are just in the ebb and flow of our day. All well and good ~ unless it’s not. What if how things are going is not good? What if the other team is kicking our butts and they’re the last place team and we’re so much better than this?

It’s always easier to keep on doing what we’re doing and just hope it gets better. That’s the hazard of ‘ready-setting’ while you’re in-the-game. No whistle is gonna sound telling us it’s time to get started. In fact the only whistle we’re likely to hear is the one signaling the end of the game.

That’s when we’re got to stop for just a moment so we can start again differently. When we can reassess what’s working and what isn’t. That’s when we find our own go. And commit to it. Because waiting on the halftime pep talk to re-orient us may be too late. The deficit from the first half may be too big to dig out of. The traffic behind us is backing up. There is more work coming down the pike. The pressure is mounting.

So much of life may just be discovering our own “Go!” point. Or perhaps realizing that each time I’ve readied and then gotten set with God, whatever Go I have chosen He has somehow made right. True, some of the legs of those races have been very short before He’s stopped me to head me in a slightly different direction.

I think God may not be the one holding the start gun or blowing the kick off whistle. That may be me. I say Go. God says …ahead. See if there’s anything I can’t do with someone willing to go.

Step by step instructions: God’s GPS for all creation

Wouldn’t it be great if I could punch God into my GPS?

Turn right here.
In 6 tenths of a mile, exit right on Route 28.
Keep left on the ramp
Left on Home Rd.
You have arrived.

I especially like that last part. Of course I am ever doubting my nav system. I mean, does it really know the best route? Has it taken traffic into consideration? I’ll bet I can take a back route that is shorter and will save me time. Just give me the address.

Pretty soon we are arguing with each other.

Nav system: Turn here.

Me: I’m turning down there!

Nav: recalculating…

Me: Oh man, where am I?

Nav: Make a U-turn.

Actually, this sounds quite a bit like God and me. I’m thinking I may have a God-implanted Nav system after all. Turn here…no, I have a better way…oops… It’s that doing as it says thing. Honestly, I’d much rather He just tell me where we’re both gonna end up and leave the surface roads to me.

But I’m certain that’s not how it is supposed to work. I know because my best navigation days are the ones where I just listen for the next instruction. Can’t say it sounds anything like my Nav system voice. It’s more of a notion that pops into my head that insists I write it or read it or call it or research it or…

This morning my desk is covered with opportunity. Literally, everywhere I look something begs me to get busy on it. My prayer: “Which one?!” Quite profound, I know. And wouldn’t you know, God insists I write the card to a woman who has had hip surgery. Oh, He makes it make sense; I need to go to the post office anyway to mail my check to the IRS. Certified. Return receipt requested. Thank you for what you do, Government.

And that’s like God, to make it seem like this one thing is the only thing meant for this moment. the perfect choice. So I do. I write. And then God points out that our policy (His and mine) is to place the note in the mailbox directly after writing – not take it to the post office. Ohhhkaaay. So He’s tricked me into writing this card. But it’s nice out and I skip on down the porch steps, checking out the mulch that needs sweeping and…there, on the ground under the small holly tree is a nest. About the size of the palm of my hand. I can see the soft dog fluff lining the inside. On the way back from the mailbox I stoop to carefully examine this little treasure.

A tiny masterpiece that fits easily in my fingers.

A tiny masterpiece that fits easily in my fingers.

It weighs almost nothing. I examine its construction. Among the dog fluff are a couple leaves, and bits and pieces of sticks and stems that have been shaped and rounded. I see tufts of string from the carpeting we used to line the dog ramp. There’s a little plastic mesh; it probably came from the netting around our garden.

What I am holding in my hand is a masterpiece, of design, construction and ingenuity. How did it come to be? By the instincts of a mother bird who, step by step, followed the “voice” inside her. She doesn’t know “family.” She doesn’t know “planning.” She doesn’t know “what’s growing inside her.” She just knows what to do and does it.

And I look at this nest in amazement. The intricacies of its composition. The perfection of its design. It most certainly was several days’ effort in a season of breeding and care-taking and launching from the nest. This sparrow or tufted titmouse or black-capped chickadee mother just called on what was available to fulfill her need. And it was provided for her. Now THAT is amazing navigation.

Imagine if we had that implanted in us.

“Look at the birds in the sky. They don’t sow seed or harvest grain or gather crops into barns. Yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are?” ~ Matthew 6:26

Imagine if we trusted that all we need would be provided for us.
Imagine if we trusted that the know-how was already in us.
Imagine if we simply built our day like this mother built her nest.
Seeking…finding…crafting…then waiting.
Thank you, Pauline, for your inspiration. May your day be instinctive and very productive.
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