I was helped by a clerk named Adam when I visited the local department of motor vehicles’ office to get a new driver’s license when Burt and I had moved from South Carolina to Florida. Adam told me about his father who had been a residential roofer, working construction jobs his whole life, until he recently died at just sixty years old. Adam explained that he wanted to follow his dreams “if God willing” and that his job at the DMV was not his true passion, he wanted to be in broadcasting, that is “if God willing,” he said, and while he had researched for a couple of years various career paths and universities to attend for broadcast journalism, he didn’t see the opportunities lining up quite yet. He figured that it wasn’t the right time to move on his dream, and “God willing,” it would happen soon. Finally, I said, “Adam, God is willing. Just by giving you the dream and the passion, God is willing. But, you have to take action and make it happen.”
Are you waiting for a divine answer to your problems or questions? Do you believe that things in your life will work out ‘as they should,’ because you are not making the plans for your life? Are you praying for a result or a change in your circumstances, though not doing the work or taking the action to get it?
In the dictionary, the definition of ‘Providence’ is: The foreseeing care and guidance of God or nature over the creatures of the earth; God, especially when conceived as omnisciently directing the universe and the affairs of humankind with wise benevolence; provident or prudent management of resources, prudence; and foresight, provident care. Therefore, Providence is another beautiful name for God, and it is also what God does.
Here’s a great parable by an unknown author that exemplifies the crossroads of providence and action: While out to sea, a large boat became shipwrecked and there was only a single survivor. This man prayed and asked God to save his life. Soon thereafter, another boat came by and offered the man some help. “No thanks,” he said. “I’m waiting for God to save me.” The men on the boat shrugged their shoulders and continued. As the man became more deeply concerned, another boat came by. Again, the people aboard offered this man some help, and again he politely decline. “I’m waiting for God to save me,” he said again. After some time, the man drowned. Upon reaching Heaven, the man asked God, “Why did you let me die? Why didn’t you answer my prayers?” God said, “I sent you two boats!”
Your search for meaning, purpose and true love has brought you to the crossroads of Providence Street and Action Lane. Perhaps that mix is to say that God helps those who help themselves.
Providence Street and Action Lane is an exciting place to be. You need only put your energy into the latter. That’s the beauty of the crossroads.