Isaiah 55:8-9 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the Lord. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts".
When our oldest daughter was five years old, we enrolled her in violin lessons. Playing the violin came easy for her. She remained in lessons until she graduated high school and played in a college orchestra all four of her high school years. When our son turned five, we had the same plans for him. So, we enrolled him in violin lessons with the same teacher. Surely his musical experiences would be like hers. Their lessons were on the same day which made things easier for our schedule. Music lessons were wrapped up in a neat little box at our house.
A few years into the lessons, practices, and yearly recitals, our son announces that he wants to quit violin lessons. Since he was performing quite well, we could not understand why there was a problem. There were times that he would become frustrated with reading the music as his teacher required. Our son told us that he did not see songs and music from a sheet of paper. He could hear them in his mind and then play them on the violin. He is a musician that plays by ear. This method did not blend with the teaching style of the instructor. As time progressed, our son's frustration level increased. He was ready to release his musical talent in his own way but he was restricted by the "neat little box".
Long story shortened, he asked to quit violin lessons. He wanted to play guitar. There was some bargaining, expectations declared, deal making, etc. In order to bridle the emergence of a potential rock and roll star from our address, my husband required that our son play at least 50% of praise and worship music during his practices. He complied and his musical gift has brought him much enjoyment and has been a blessing to us.
Yesterday, as I listened to our son playing in the praise and worship band at church, I thought of "neat little boxes" and Isaiah 55:8-9. We like for our lives to be wrapped up in neat little boxes. We want everything to be organized. We live in a box, work in a box, store things in boxes, and put gifts in boxes. Many times we only want to think inside the boxes. I am thankful that God urged us to think outside the musical box several years ago with our son.
When we follow God's ways and His will, we will be required to think outside the box. At times that will look scary. God may ask us to move from our house box. He may ask us to quit a job that has our career wrapped up in the "neat little box". He may change and rearrange the organized box that we call life.
Learn to think outside the boxes. Open your mind to the ways in which God has planned for you. His way is higher than any way we can ever imagine. His plans are flawless and in perfect timing!