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Reflecting on the process

Last update on Dec. 6, 2017.

Reflecting on the process

“God investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. I’m an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking.” Psalm 139:1

Have you ever gotten lost in reliving and rearranging experiences, some regretfully and others with a full-on plan as to how things would have turned out if you had done it differently? Well I have! The truth is, my mind processing has become a ‘brain activity marathon’. And as much as this journey of life has become a long distance run, I’m thinking that I more than likely have a few more miles to go. With that accepted awareness I have an exciting sense of responsibility to take careful note of each moment.

One of my keynotes in this process is that there’s nothing random within our moments. God has, already noted everything we’re experiencing whether expected or unexpected. That truth could become perplexing if we are not intentional about trusting God in the process and be ready to embrace the paradigm of faith.

Embracing the paradigm of faith for me means allowing a healthy curiosity to prepare me for my next steps without stressing over where those steps are taking me. To the superficial observer I may seem like a vicarious traveler who has no plan. The truth is, my plan is to completely surrender to the multiple plans that God has for me. And as spiritual as that may sound, it’s the most practical decision I could have ever made knowing I have limited control over anything beyond this present step because He has ordered all my steps and directed the course before me.

My definition of a healthy curiosity is probing with my eyes closed and expecting with an open mind instead of open hands. I’ve been in this race of life for a while now and have wisely accepted that the power of the long distance runner is not seeing the finished line but focusing on the run. The process of living is very similar to a designed running track, whether a sprint track or a strategized marathon course. The success of the journey is in the running process. The powerful decision of a successful run takes place in every step. The runner’s ability to focus without being distracted by visible mileposts, water stops and cheerers is key to a successful finish.

It’s easy to lose perspective when you can’t see the finish line, your water bottle is empty, the last milepost indicated you have quite a ways to go and the cheerers seem to disappear.  But great runners don't settle for easy runs.  They are prepared for obstacles along the way.  They bounce back resiliently should they encounter the unexpected and refuse to be distracted by the visible.  We expect to finish and we will! 

It may seem seriously presumptuous of me to count myself among the great runners in the race of life.  However I do this without apology but with reverend humility.  I have long ago realized that I can never escape God’s scrutiny or be out of His sight.  In my younger years I was reluctant to surrender to the process of living and preferred focusing on the destination of life.  I can say long distance running experience has taught me wisdom and now my focus is on my purpose in the race and not on the event of the race.  This paradigm shift has kept me healthily curious and faithfully expectant without stressing on visible detail. 

Psalm 139 is a great reminder to surrender my curiosity to God’s research and let Him point out the things in my path that are distracting.  This spiritual truth can only be obeyed through practical obedience and full expectancy that He will lead me along the path of eternal life.  An amazing race and a successful finish!


Arlene Hoffman

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