Friday, September 9, 2016

What's on Your Bucket List?

Finish High School - Check
Get a good job -- Check (Nope, college wasn't on the list.)
Get married - Check
Have babies - Check
Lose 10 pounds - Check
Learn to fly an airplane - Check
Go on a cruise - Check (15, in fact)
Take a trip to the Holy Lands -- (still on my list)

Another way to look at "bucket lists", is making a list of goals that we hope to accomplish before "heaven" calls our names. My husband was a relentless, annual goal setter -- not just those he hoped to accomplish before he "went home", but before the year ended. So much so, that he made a Vision Board each year, casting the vision for what we were believing to accomplish in that year. Habakkuk 2:2 says "Write the vision, make it plain so that he who reads it can run with it." While cleaning out my office closet, I found this old Vision Board that Ron not only wrote the vision but he made it plain by clipping out photos of what he was believing for.

Here are some of his Vision 2008 specifics:
Home on a lake -- bought that home in Sapulpa. Check.
TEAM 2008 -- His sister and bro-in-law in business with us. Check. Our family altogether on a family vacation. (Took a cruise) Check
Becoming proficient at fly fishing. Check.
New laptop computer. Check.
Missions trip and teaching pastors in Belize. Check
Working with the Joshua Child Development Center. Check.

But, several things on that Vision Board DIDN'T come about. Sometimes, our best laid plans and goals don't come to pass. But that's when, those of us who trust in God and His best "bucket list" for our lives, defer to "His ways are higher than our ways." (Isaiah 55:9)

Think about Mary, Jesus' Mother, and what her bucket list might have looked like. We know she had a goal to get married to Joseph because they were engaged, and she probably was already getting her beautiful wedding gown made and maybe she was already practicing writing her new name -- Mrs. Joseph -- and she probably dreamed of the day when she would have a baby -- probably thinking about calling him Joseph Junior. But all those dreams still had to make way for God's "bucket list". Mary's greatest accomplishment happened when she put aside her own goals and said "YES" to whatever God's bucket list had on it.

Mary shows us that saying "yes" to God's plan for our lives can be far more rewarding -- and surprising -- than any list we could ever come up with. We hope that we don't have the challenges and hardships that Mary had, but then again, who else could say that "a simple 'yes' made her the Mother of our Creator, our Savior and our Lord?

Let's continue to set goals, cast vision, dream big dreams, live with audacious and unwavering faith......BUT -- let's stay open to God's Master Plan for our lives and be willing to trade in our bucket list for His. The best news is....His list comes with great rewards -- peace, joy, happiness AND life everlasting, as well as GREAT adventures and excitement of having a really awesome relationship with Almighty God.