The day I said the title of this post to my mother we were on an escalator and I was in high school. We were at the mall in Winnipeg. We had just finished eating poutine (a recent culinary revelation for my mother) I don't remember exactly what we were talking about or how I came to say it to her but I did. We were going down the escalator and I very casually said, "Well mom, make God laugh, tell him you have plans." I never realized the impact of my statement until it ended up on my moms personal testimony about 6 months later which caused a great roar of laughter from our congregation at the time but also spoke very deeply to our personality quirk/flaw that compels my mother and I to plan our lives within an inch of itself.
I've recently been thinking about that statement which naturally leads me to think about Jeremiah 29:11. Plans. Prosperity. Hope. A future. Just note a key phrase there, "For I know the plan I have for you" Not "I know the plans you have." Cue my lifelong frustration with this particular passage of the bible. I'm a planner. My mother is a planner. My mothers mother was a planner. It's frustrating to know that sometimes no matter what I have planned for myself it might not be what actually happens. I have often complained "this isn't what I planned!!" and Johnathan often pipes up, "no, but this is how it was suppose to go." Darn you and your wisdom!
Little known fact, the day before we found out about Switzerland wheels were set in motion for me to go back to school. I was going to go back for a Marketing and Communication after degree at my fathers Alma Mater. The program was designed for people who had a career and degrees but needed/wanted that extra piece of paper. Much of the course was designed around the non-profit sector and many of the graduates were either already working in, had worked in or planned on going into non-profit. I had a fantastic meeting. I made a list of the references I was going to call the next day for letters. I had the application partly filled out. I had information about grants, bursaries and Johnathan was fully prepared to support me as a full time student. Not 24 hours later the entire course of both our lives was changed with an email from Switzerland. We often talk about what I'm going to do with myself. We laugh and quote the movie Julie and Julia by saying, "You could make hats...you like hats." But if you read about her life in France she followed her husband there without a plan and went on to write one of the most epic cookbook of all time. Huh. Seems fitting that Johnathan chose to get me a copy of "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" Volumes 1 and 2 as an anniversary gift this year.
For the first time in my life I don't have a plan for me. Okay scratch that, my plan for me is to live here and write. That's it. I followed my husband to another continent without a plan (what that's like is for another post.) I continue to not have a plan for me. Very out of character. But maybe that's the point. Maybe, just maybe, that's the reason I'm here. Living without a plan and just seeing what happens. Opening my arms wide and saying "Bring it on" to the Universe and leaving my check list at home.