Perusing Jacquie Lawson animated greeting cards last Christmas season, I came upon one entitled An Unexpected Nativity. In it a cat creates havoc in a barn as a dog chases it about. The cat runs over and under, on top of and amongst shelves of tools, knocking over equipment and a dangling lift rope that all pile together on the floor in disarray.
Light shines on and through the chaotic pile as a farmer, a man holding a lantern, removes his hat to gaze in wonder at the shadow cast on the wall. A shadow that would not be there without the light shining on it. A shadow of the nativity with shepherds, wisemen, Joseph, Mary and baby Jesus.
This card gives me hope. And reminds from Whom my hope comes. I really do prefer peace over chaos, and have found myself endeavoring to control chaotic situations. Especially the ones that surround me, like grandchildren wound up with energy exploding out of every cell. Of course, like herding cats, or trying to catch one that is in full speed ahead, controlling whatever the chaos might be is complicated. Sure, direction and boundaries are important, yet I have also found that simply moving out of the way is also a reasonable response to an oncoming tornado. Control is not always the solution!
Perhaps a lesson from the farmer is one to note. He was no where to be seen as the cat flew about. The chaos just happened, and then came the light. Sounds a bit like the Creation: darkness and chaos. And then there was light. My hope resides in the living God Who still brings light into chaos and creates something beautiful. And though He is ever-present, He has given man free will to choose, God not controlling every tiny bit of every situation. So why should I? Not that I could, yet a part of me senses relief in the thought, as non-earth-shattering as that might be.
No, I do not have to control my chaos, though picking up pieces or setting things back in order might be part of the plan. It makes for less tension, calms the situation more quickly, and helps maintain healthy blood pressure. I thank the LORD for every bit of grace He gives me, for like the unexpected nativity, His grace and light can always be found, no matter my turbulent situation.