Far from where you planned – exactly where you need to be

Has life not quite turned out like you planned? Does this resonate? ~ “It’s amazing how you can get so far from where you had planned, and yet find it was exactly where you needed to be.” ~ If it does, then you need to hear this: “Sometimes when things are falling apart, they may actually be falling into place.” God is the ultimate “repurposer” of lives. His is not only the author of good, He is the authority on good.

When life doesn’t behave, we can trust that our Creator – the ultimate repurposer – has a plan better than we could have hoped for. Inside: Hope if you’re facing difficulties in life.


“It’s amazing how you can get so far from where you had planned,
and yet find it was exactly where you needed to be.”

I pinned this quote to one of my Pinterest boards. It leaped off the screen one night in between “40 ways to tie a scarf” and “31 organizing tips to get your life under control.”  I pinned them all. Don’t laugh. I bet you’ve pinned something similar.
Has life not quite turned out like you planned? Are you facing difficulties in life? “It’s amazing how you can get so far from where you had planned, and yet find it was exactly where you needed to be.” ~ If it does, then you need to hear this: “Sometimes when things are falling apart, they may actually be falling into place.” God is the ultimate “repurposer” of lives. His is not only the author of good, He is the authority on good. Faith quotes, Christian quotes, Scripture encouragement
Well, depending on who you are or where you live, you might not be as interested in scarf origami (which, let’s face it – that’s what anything beyond the three basic knots becomes).

But I bet you would have paused on the organizing tips and lingered on the quote. How do I know? You have a pulse.

We all have visions of that moment in time when we will have mastered the art of living, complete with the stuff of life completely tamed and under control. #PerfectLife

How about: #NotEvenClose

The Repurposed Life

I initially planned to name this blog “The Repurposed Life.” At the time, my life had taken some unexpected turns and things didn’t look anything like what I had expected. It wasn’t bad. It just wasn’t the plan I crafted.

I went with a different name, but I did a lot of research on the concept of repurposing. In almost providential preparation for what lay in my near future, I learned all about “trash to treasure” and “upcycling.”

I began to realize everywhere you look — old is the new “new.” Junk is in. The more extensive the rust, the higher the price.

What was once in the backyard rusting is now in the family room under a lamp. It’s being reclaimed, revitalized, and renewed.

Four months after that research, I lay in a bed recovering from an emergency and rusting inside. At the time, I would have given anything to go back to the previous “unexpected” version of my life. At least it had purpose.

It was a downward spiral; one that left me feeling completely useless and used up.

The circumstances aren’t important. Those vary significantly between us all. But this core sense of questioning if life still has meaning when things don’t turn out like we planned and we’re facing difficulties in life? Well, that’s something we can all gather around and unite over.

Wait. What?
You thought you were the only one?

Oh, dear weary traveler ~ pull up a chair and let’s talk.

Facing difficulties in life

Chippy Paint and Rusted Parts

Every time I open up about the hard stuff of life, I receive emails, messages, and comments from many with similar thoughts:

“It’s like you were in my head.”
“You described exactly what I’m struggling with. How did you know?
“I thought I was the only one who thought that way.”

Most are surprised that someone else can put onto a screen the regular narrative running around in their head. Like we think we’re all alone in our doubt and discouragement while everyone else sails through life.

I imagine the enemy likes to convince us that’s true, but it’s not. For most of us …

The goals we prioritized a decade ago are now just a source of joking about “little did I know.”

The talents and passions we offered up to the Lord in the bright-eyed days of our younger years aren’t being used quite like we imagined.

We’re battered and bruised and worn and weathered. Our paint is chippy and our parts are rusting.

Sometimes, it even feels like we’re stuck in the backyard of life.

On the junk pile.

Without a shelter.

In a freezing hailstorm.

Purpose is elusive and value seems to be fading.

Can you relate?
Raise your hand to amen.

Now keep it there in praise and hallelujah ‘cause I’m about to testify and I could use a witness. (~smile)

What you need to know:
The Author is also the Authority

Let’s start with this:
We don’t get the final say on our lives or what is valuable, beautiful, and purposeful.
Life is one big repurposing act and the Lord God – the Creator of all — is the Ultimate Repurposer of lives.

This is true in the most important sense of the idea — as the gift of salvation transforms a life destined for eternal separation into one certain to be lived in the presence of Jesus.

And it is true also for the life lived while we still have breath. God is not only the Author of good, He is the Authority on good. And His goodness is neither created by our faith nor suspended by our doubt.

Where we see rust, our Redeemer sees a seasoned life less full of self and more primed for His purposes.

“Therefore we do not lose heart.
Though outwardly we are
wasting away,
yet inwardly we are
being renewed day by day. …

We pick at our chippy paint while our Creator notices we are finally acknowledging that perfection is not the goal.

… For our light and
momentary troubles
are achieving for us
an eternal glory that
far outweighs them all. …

We sit in the rain, certain that all value is lost … until … we look up and feel the hands of the Universal Picker, gently lifting us up, taking us inside, and placing His light on our lives.

… So we fix our eyes
not on what is seen,
but on what is unseen. …

Just like the repurposed stuff of life is given new meaning, restored value, and a refined use it couldn’t have ever conceived, so the Master Craftsman works His plan with our broken dreams and surrendered goals.

… For what is seen
is temporary,
but what is unseen
is eternal.”
(2 Cor. 4:16-18, NIV)

And we come to the place of embracing this reality:
“Sometimes when things are falling apart, they may actually be falling into place.”  

Because it’s in the middle of brokenness where we truly reflect His power.

“But he said to me,
‘My grace is sufficient for you,
for my power is made
perfect in weakness.’
Therefore I will boast
all the more gladly
of my weaknesses,
so that the power of Christ
may rest upon me.”
(2 Cor. 12:9)

Dear friend, God is not finished with you.

He’s never undone and never out of options.
You don’t have His perspective, but you have His promises.
He has purpose for your pain, grace for your weakness, and glory for your future.

Our mission here on earth may not look like what we hoped, but it will look like what He planned. And isn’t that what we desire most?

[Oh, you can put your hand down now.]
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Keep Reading: More Posts Like This Survival grade faith when facing challenges in life

Combat feelings of discouragement and brokenness when facing difficulties in life with survival-grade faith.

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Christi

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Author | Occasional Speaker | Marketing professional ~ · ~ I write and speak so others know they aren't alone and are encouraged to grow in survival-grade faith. ~ · ~ Books: Behold: A Christmas Advent Journey and  Revival: 6 Steps to Reviving Your Heart and Rebuilding Your Prayer Life

Making Life & Words Count!


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10 Comments on “Far from where you planned – exactly where you need to be”

  1. I have so lived in this place after my minister husband died of ALS. God has been faithful and IS good….no matter what. He has walked me through the grief and pain to the other side of a reordered life! Hang in there and trust in Him.

    1. What a journey you have been on. And what a testimony of God’s sustaining grace through every step. Thank you for your words of kindness and support!

  2. As usual, you have perfect timing and wonderful wording!

    I think God has specially and specifically given you the ability to know what to say, when to say it, and how to say it!

    Thank you for being such an encouragement!

    Your life blesses mine…often!

    Melanie

  3. It’s been a while since I visited (no particular reason), but these words come at just the right time! Thank you for being a light for Truth and an encourager in the blogosphere.

  4. I had a similar convo with my son last night on our 4 1/2 hour trip to TN in the pouring rain. The rug got pulled out from under him last month, and it turns out most of his WV classes only translated to half credits. This, after attending UT for 2 1/2 years. ACK!
    However, we spent much time in thanksgiving for what God brought him to here in this town. Even though he was raised in church, a godly home, and Christian school (even attending Bible college at one point), here, in this city is where he caught the vision for a radical, passionate Christian life.
    Even though he will not be finishing UT (and will end up with a general bachelor’s degree by finishing online from our little university back home), he knows this place is where God lead him. His church is his calling.
    After years of encouraging him to become a worship leader and him saying no (because truly, he had no zeal for the things of the Lord)
    …he is now a worship leader and right hand man to the main worship leader at church. He wants to see souls come to Christ. He’s exciting about the work of God in reaching humanity right where they are. And I told him last night, that no matter what he does, all I ever wanted was for him to serve the Lord.
    God knew all along what He was doing. And I’m trusting Him to lead my son to a wife too. (You can pray about that with me.)
    Blessings to you, friend. And thanks for the encouragement over the newsletter! We really MUST meet someday!

    1. Such a testimony you are building during all of this launching! I will join you in prayer over our kiddos-turned-adults! Appreciate you so much, dear friend!

You have something worth saying!