Thursday, August 30, 2007

Are We There Yet?

So are we?

Are we almost there?

You know, I really have no right to get irritated with my children when they keep asking that question on one of our long drives to see their grandparents five and a half hours away ~ or from my three year old walking down to the park, five minutes from home. I can't very well justify my annoyance with them, either, when I just cannot seem to get to the end of the "why?" sequences with my toddlers, or the "why nots?" from my teenagers. I should have endless patience with my little girls when they're constantly pestering me to know what's next on the schedule, later in the day, tomorrow, next week, next month, next Christmas... And about those "Can-I-haves," especially... The answer may still be "no," but I should be smiling and not gritting my teeth.

Why have I come to this conclusion? Well, I recently realized that I have been an insufferable pest to God. The sound of my own prayers are reverberating in the halls of my conscious now: "Can I please, God?"
"Could You make this happen sooner rather than later?"
"Can't we have this now?"
"Can't this be over now?"
"Are we there yet?"
Over and over.

He did say, "Ask and ye shall receive." And I take comfort in that. I know He expects us to petition Him and He said He'd answer us. Of course He didn't say how, and he didn't say when, and that's where I seem to get hung up.

"Aren't we there yet?"

Do you suppose He's used to being pestered? He must almost expect it. But then, it must be really nice to not hear whining coming from a customarily noisy backseat occasionally. It must stand out to Him, in fact, when we're just taking the ride in stride, behaving ourselves, minding our business and trusting Him to decide when to take the rest stops.

This is the analogy I've been thinking about, and it's why I decided to title this blog as I did. Here we are, here and now. Our Heavenly Father is driving the van and He certainly knows where He's going. I'm just one of the kids. Do I doubt that He knows the way and that He'll get me there safely? It never even occured to me as a child that my Dad couldn't find his way to one of the moons of Saturn, and get us there safely and on time. But, I had the same problem then as I do now on a larger scale. I just couldn't resist asking for candy at the gas stations, and I just had to know when, when, when? I know it drove my Dad nuts; it drives me nuts now as a parent.

It's good to know God is more patient than we are. He is all-perfect, all knowing and all merciful. It's such a good thing. Because I realize I am still a pest, here in my early forties. I think I'm a well-meaning pest, but I can't help myself.

So, ok. Now that I see myself in the heavenly rearview mirror, what am I going to do about it? I know I need to work on being more trusting, more compliant to His will, and better practiced at living in the moment. Certainly, my own failing should lead me to better understand my children's impatience. And, of course I'll try to instruct them in the fine art of forebearance, but I will try to be merciful about it...

I'll try to remember that God knows how I need to get to where I'm going and what I do and do not need along the way. (He knows when I do not need a Snickers or a Dr. Pepper, right, Dad?)

And, now when I say "Are we there yet?" I'll try hard to be looking forward to my ultimate destination: Heaven.


KEVVY said...

Amen to that! This is a pretty neat little thing! I'm sure you wil have plenty of fun with it! Don't forget to say something about Alena! :)

Anonymous said...

That's cool!! I guess we're a "hip" family now that we have a blog. ;)

Anonymous said...

So, Paul, does that imply that we weren't a hip family before? :-)

Hill upon Hill said...