Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Best Laid Plans

In lieu of where I currently am in life, I've been thinking a lot lately about how I got here. . .

As I mentioned in my last post, during the few weeks that I have been here in New Orleans, I've had the rare opportunity to not only maintain a relationship with the couple who my friends and I served this summer, but I have actually had the privilege of "doing life" with them.

Scharmaine and I go shopping together and Ivan and I talk about music. We do favors for each other and go to church together and even talk on the phone. Last week when they were staying here in the house, I was laying in bed one night, and I could hear Ivan's voice on the other side of the wall. In that moment I was completely dumbfounded by the intricacy of God's sovereignty. 8 months ago on the day that I met Ivan and Scharmaine, I would not have guessed in my wildest dreams that 8 months later I would be living here in their city, sleeping under the same roof as them. Every time I think about it, it amazes me.

Today I had a similar thought when I was standing on the balcony outside of my bedroom looking at the skyline of the city. My eyes were immediately drawn to the infamous Superdome. Again I was amazed at the thought of being here in this place. I remembered watching the news and hearing the horror stories of what happened inside that building in the wake of Katrina, and now here I was living not even half a mile away from it. Again, never in my wildest dreams. . .

Then there are the logistics of what I do each day and why I am here in the first place. On a daily basis I explain to some inquisitive volunteer what I went to school for, how I learned to cook, and then try to answer the question of how those two paths came to intersect. It has started to cross my mind that maybe this is exactly why. Is it outside of the realm of possibilities that I have spent the last four years learning a skill because God knew that there would be a need in this place, at this time, that I could fill? I'd like to think not. . .

Anyone who knows me well knows that I oftentimes wonder how my path in life has gotten so "off course" from what I always expected and hoped it would be. My plans never included being 30 and single, working in the food industry, or being a "missionary" in a distant city. As you can probably guess, it's starting to sink in to my thick skull that maybe there is a much bigger, more fitting plan than I could have ever come up with on my own -- the kind of plan that only Someone who sees the "big picture" could come up with :)

"You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother's womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous - and how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me even before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book . Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, Oh God! They are innummerable!" Psalm 139:13-17


  1. Praise the Lord, Julie!!! This is truly amazing to read about your experiences in the short time you have been at the Yellow House in NOLA. He is doing a mighty work in you and through you, sister. Thank God - there IS a bigger plan!! It was terrific talking with you today. I love you!

  2. Hey Jules, keep up the good work! By the way everyone has a plan sometimes the trees block the path so it is not always straight shot. Good luck!