I don’t think it is very healthy to spend too much time dwelling on the past. What could have been and what should have been are futile topics I tend to avoid. Yet, every now and then, I get a little reminiscent. I remember people and places encountered along this journey called life. Some of those people and places forever changed who I am and how I live. And likewise, some of those people are forever marked by me, by my words, my actions and my beliefs. I pray that I planted seeds of God’s love and mercy into all those people I touched. Conversely, I know they sowed God’s goodness into my life, because I see their words and deeds flourishing in my life and in the lives of my family even now.
Truly, I think such prayerful reflection is good for the soul. It is much like a rest stop on the road of life, a place to refuel and recheck the direction of the journey. But like all roadside rest stops, reflection is not a place to take up permanent residence. The journey must go on. Yes, there is a definite need for rest, a time to examine the trail we are leaving behind us as we live and learn; but, what lies ahead is what matters most. And for those of us who call ourselves Christians, what lies ahead is heaven.
While writing Dandelion Trail, I had the opportunity to stop and reflect for quite awhile. I can’t say it was a very restful stop, but it was a time of deep retrospection for me as a daughter, wife and mother. I learned so much about myself through telling this portion of Hallie Benson’s tale. She showed me that it does not matter how young or old I am; God can use me to transform my world if I am merely willing and available.
Yes, meeting Hallie completely changed me! For instance, I will forever look at dandelions and toothbrushes very differently. I now know that God can use common, everyday people (and things) to accomplish His most uncommon goals. Now, more than ever, I want to do just that. I want to accomplish kingdom-minded things that seem absolutely impossible. I want to write a million more stories that point people straight to Jesus. Like Hallie, I want to use every single gift within me, no matter how seemingly insignificant, to spread His gospel message of hope and love around the world.
That is why I can’t stop long for reflection. I have a journey to travel, a trail to blaze. I might only be able to plant one tiny seed at a time, but because of Hallie Benson, I know that God is directing my journey. And as the Lord of the Harvest, He can tend the seeds I plant along my trail. God is more than able; Hallie proves that to me with every new day!
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