Friday, October 4, 2013

Unplanned Moments

I was helping cut open the rumbutans at recess yesterday when I slipped with the knife and cut into the top of my finger.  As blood spurted, I wrapped my other hand around it and headed off to the staff kitchen area to wash it off and survey the damage.  Next, I headed in search of the rather-large bandaid supply (always a must in any school) and located it in the cupboard of the preschool teacher's room.  Whilst my first-aid action began, a conversation also started with one of my fellow staff members who was in the office working... one that would not have occurred had it not been for that slip of that knife.  
I love these moments in time when a precious conversation is needed and can occur right there amongst the busyness of the day, amongst the blood and bandaid wrappers and lesson preparations.
I'm feel so thankful for the opportunity I have to be apart of the ups and downs of people's lives, to stand with them in prayer and faith and for these unplanned 'moments' (however painful they may be) that lead us to stop. and talk. and share.  

I often reflect back to that painful month in 2011 when Eliana was being bullied at her preschool.  At how we shared in her pain but had no idea how our little girl would bounce back or just when or how she would come through it.  It was through a random conversation with an unlikely friend who suggested checking out a new, little preschool, 30 minutes drive from our home, that had just opened the month before... seriously?  What? Would I really drive 30 minutes each way twice a day for preschool?  And yet, when I checked it out {with all my skepticism, hurt, unforgiveness and arguments for its "inconvenience"} it blew me away.  

Don't get me wrong, this preschool (and now school) is not built amongst beautiful surroundings, it hasn't got all the latest equipment, the playground is small and the classrooms are tiny, BUT the culture and 'feel' of this school was what won me over... and my husband... and our kids.  
And now, here I am teaching at the school.  Not surrounded by all the resources and technology that would make life just that little bit easier, but by some of the most wonderful teachers that make me laugh and that have built a beautiful culture where each child is accepted and loved.  Another unplanned 'moment' but one which lead us to discover something new. not previously on our radar. an answer to a prayer. more than what we expected.

And the award for the biggest unplanned moment, so far, would have to go to that time nearly 4 years ago when we uprooted our family from our comfortable life and moved across the seas to Thailand.  We never would've chosen this journey, but God has been right there alongside us with every step of the way. 
I like what Alan Ward writes,
"Isn’t all of life an unplanned journey? Each day comes to us; we don’t get to preview it and skip the days that we don’t like. We can only choose to receive what each day brings and struggle to find God in the midst of it all—for God is with us always if we can but train our eyes to see, our ears to hear, and our hearts to be open to receive Christ into our lives anew each day.
I hope and pray that in time we will all learn to see God with us in every present moment and especially on the unplanned journeys that are so much a part of this life."

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