Musings

Living With Open Hands

Lately my life feels a lot like letting go.

Letting go of stuff.

Letting go of plans.

Letting go of fear.

A few months back I was struggling to figure out how to navigate our somewhat nomadic lifestyle of living overseas.  I’ve moved a lot in my life, so it wasn’t the packing up that was getting to me, it was the figuring out what to hang onto and what to let go of.  How do I live a simple life, yet make our home comfortable for our family?  How do I embrace a vision for my life yet walk in daily obedience to the Father, even when that obedience means leaving a dream behind?

How do we strike a balance between living smart and surrendered?

Our middle daughter’s bike has been sitting in our backyard, broken and unusable, for almost a year now.  It is rusted, the tires are flat, and the chain won’t stay on.  When our neighbor asked if she could have it for her family friend who lives down the street, we immediately said yes.  However, when my daughter later saw that same bike, fixed and working, she quickly changed her mind about letting it go and wanted it back.

Letting go is hard.  Sometimes we don’t even know how we really feel about something until we let it go.

We find out if we’ve really forgiven that person when we let go of bitterness.

We find out if we’re too materialistic when we let go of stuff.

We find out if we care too much what others think when we let go of reputation.

We find out if we’re chasing a dream rather than the Dream-Giver when we let go of that dream.

As I go through my house finding things to let go of, I am more resolved than ever to live open-handed.  I want to receive and steward well the blessings and talents I have been given, but I never want to hold onto them so tightly that I refuse to let go and make room for something better.  And sometimes, my holding-on means missing out on blessing someone else.

Although my daughter’s bike is fixed, it is still in rough shape, and she doesn’t realize that she has a much better bike waiting for her when we arrive in America in just a few weeks.  The trade-off is worth it, but she can’t see that yet because the letting-go is painful.  And sometimes the same is true for us.  Sometimes you find yourself in between the letting-go and the blessing-on-the-way.   Sometimes it seems like you’re stuck in the middle and wondering if letting go is worth it.  But when we live open-handed, we can always trust that the Father’s call to let go will be rewarded with His promise to provide for His children.

So, as I enter this season of transition with open hands- letting go of what’s behind and looking to what is ahead- I do so with the hope that my hands may stay empty for a season, but my heart is filled with the peace of knowing my Father is in control, and He will fill my hands to overflowing in His time.

What do you need to let go of today?  

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