Two Stories-One Message
Two stories for you. Bear with me a minute and you will see they are closely related.
Story #1: Every day, I have at last 7 water troughs that I have to check, clean and refill with fresh water. That does not count the 6 in the stalls, and two additional in paddocks! So, suffice it to say, filling water troughs is one of those routine chores I have. I call it holy toil. Not surprisingly, occasionally I accidentally leave the water running, as I focus on another task.
Such was the situation this week. I went to turn the water on and let it fill up for the chickens. I headed inside the barn, where I brushed and began tacking up two horses in preparation for a trail ride. As I went to bridle, I noticed that the bridle was not in its usual spot. I was not the last one to use it, so at times items get moved. I went into the tack room, searching for it. Sure enough, there it was hanging on a rack. As I reached for it, I heard a noise. You see, water enters my barn directly underneath where my bridle rack is. So, I realized I had water running somewhere, and of course I instantly knew where and turned it off.
Story #2: My back pasture fence line is beginning to get a bit compromised. Not only is it close to a creek which runs near it, it is now over 10 years old and beginning to sag. Some of the posts are decaying, due to the water which is so prevalent. That, coupled with horses who want to see if, indeed, the grass is greener on the other side, makes for a broken post. As I went to repair it, with some help from one of my work-to-ride assistants, we were met with an impasse. The post had broken off at ground level. That means there was 3 feet of post still in the ground, and it was not budging! We both spent a good amount of time trying to loosen the dirt around it, so as to jiggle it out and up. It was a tiring job, with seemingly little progress. Finally, we let it rest for the day. That evening, we had a terrific rain storm. It saturated everything. We had another rainstorm the next day. Following that, I continued the task. As I stuck a pick into the below ground-level post, I pulled on the handle, and the post came out easily and effortlessly. The rain had soaked into the hole, and made my job a breeze. What a gift that rain was!
Here is the oh-so-difficult post which transformed after the rain soaked into the hole!
For me, there is a lot of congruence with these two stories. As I move through my days, I am not always aware of the orchestration that goes on behind the scenes. Just like with horses-every movement is a message. With me, as well, every step I take is ordained and directed by a power greater than myself. If I had not searched for a lost bridle–which of course was not lost at all–just needed to be found, I never would have heard that water. Water staying on for an extra hour is not the end of the world…but it is a waste of good water, and I certainly try to conserve when I can. That situation offered me encouragement. It encourages me to trust my daily process, noting that I am, as I often say, being carried and held. It produces gratitude, and a curiosity to see how other moments can unfold. And, as with the fence post, unfold it did!
My frustration of not being able to remove the post gave the rain time to soften the soil. Taking it a step deeper, in my moving away from a job not finished, that was exactly what was needed, in order for the rain to do its job.
WOW! How many other areas of my life do I “step away” due to frustration, or inability to finish? How grace-filled it would be to look at those tasks/situations with an eye of gentleness and kindness? Knowing that it was exactly as it was meant to be in that moment!
These stories serve as a reminder that I am not the captain of my own ship. They encourage me to anticipate, to look for more ways in which I deeply sense how the Universe and God are ordering my steps. I love what Genesis 28:16 says: “You were there all along, and I knew it not.” When I do not see the way, especially when I cannot see the way, I am being carried. All is well.
And you? How do you know you are being carried? What are your stories inviting you to?
We would LOVE to hear!!
-And remember: Awe is all around!