We see a book cover that says, Trust Your Journey, or maybe it is on a poster in a store. In my twenties and thirties, I’d see it and think, ‘Riiight.’ I did not begin to understand what it meant applied to myself until I had passed the big 5-oh. After fifty years of life, we are in the beginning stages of seeing the broader picture, and have acquired more understanding of ourselves, of human nature and the world.
Though we haven’t seen-it-all at fifty, we are more aware of how much we humans are alike. We tend to make the same or similar judgments and mistakes, and we have to deal with the same or similar temptations that, if succumbed to, may destroy us or our families’ lives. We’ve seen how polarized people can be, how easily frightened we are, and how beautiful things like love and family, and meaningful work, are not experienced by everyone.
Though I had questions about the cause and purpose of everything all my life, around fifty, I began to truly need to find the answers to life’s deepest questions. I wanted to understand more than I wanted to defend my own convictions, and I was willing to see my beliefs and actions stripped of all my ‘fluff and puff.’ What a surprise I found!
I was human. I made mistakes. I learned from them–sometimes very, very slowly–but I learned from them. And it was okay. I was okay. I was God’s daughter. God loved me anyway. From there, like when my young daughter found me filling Easter baskets and asked me a couple days later about Santa, I realized that if God loved me wholly, He/She must love us all wholly, no matter what. God understood us and our human natures.
Holy moly. What did this mean? I didn’t have to feel guilty? Guilt kept me trapped in the past, away from God, for no reason? I hate confessing this, but I think guilt was also a part of my pretend-humility. It is more complicated than that, but I am peeling back the layers, peeking under them first to see what might be there, and drumming up the courage to lift the layers to see the truth.
Mistakes and bad decisions are a part of the human journey, and we are loved by our Maker.