There are some side effects to this travel bug I have. Common symptoms include a heightened sense of surroundings, feelings of inferiority or superiority, an appreciation for home. My favorite is the opportunity for adventure. It takes you out of your comfort zone. And when you’re not in your comfort zone, you gain new, and often much needed, perspectives. My dad always said that backpacking around the world was the greatest education he ever received. By embracing travel and adventure, you inevitably open yourself up to learning new lessons. Here is the first I learned (or rather, re-learned) leading up to my weekend in New York City.
Life works out, and God provides.
For the first time, Valentine’s Day posed some challenges for me. After being inspired by Sleepless in Seattle, my friend began planning this trip so she could celebrate Valentine’s Day at the top of the Empire State Building. The group was planning on taking off that Friday. Even though I tried to come in for part of the day on Wednesdays, because of my weekly field trips, I felt guilty about taking extra time off. I proposed that I would work and take an early bus Saturday morning.
If you know me, you know I’m not some angry anti-Valentine’s Day single person. It’s not exactly a day I look at with the same fervor that I did when I received a mailbox full of candy in second grade, though. Most of the time, some girlfriends and I would just hang out together and have a fun night. All of the people with whom I’d want to be were going to be on the Empire State building. With my early bus, I would be hitting the sack early. So my prospects basically looked like a lonely night in, not only on a Friday, but on Valentine’s Day, when everyone else is going on fancy dates and sharing chocolate and wine, for goodness sake. That sounded really depressing.
When the New York group planned during our lunch break one day, it hit me how very ridiculous I was being to not just go to New York on Friday with the rest of the ladies. I checked with my bosses, who it turns out were completely alright with me taking the day off, and I changed my bus. Later that evening in the LCWS office, my friend Heather invited me to join her and her roommates for a Friday night of red velvet cupcake baking and rom-com movie-watching.
All of this to say, it was so reassuring to know that if I had stuck to my original plans, I would not have been entirely alone on the commercialized holiday of hearts and roses. I felt God nudging my soul, reminding me not to worry. He cares for us, always. As the coming summer and post-graduation possibilities in a year loom closer in the forefront of my everyday thoughts, this lesson is particularly relevant for me. Everything is going to be okay. A lot of times, things just fall into place, and there is very little I can do to make that happen. Life works out, and in His time, the Lord makes all things good for those who love Him. Even in our Valentine’s Days, He is our provider, and He is forever faithful.