Too Many Envelopes

Next Paul and Silas traveled through the area of Phrygia and Galatia, because the Holy Spirit had prevented them from preaching the word in the province of Asia at that time. Acts 16:6 NLT


We’ve had several rainy days recently, and on one of them, I decided to stay in and clean out drawers. I filed my greeting cards according to occasion. Yes, I wanted to organize, but I faced a dilemma when I had several odd envelopes remaining. “Several” doesn’t fully describe the sight. I didn’t count, but I think there were fifty envelopes in assorted sizes and…I had one lone greeting card that didn’t fit in any of them. How did that happen?

I began thinking about things that fit or don’t fit-besides summer clothing, because I’ve gained a few pounds. With graduation around the corner, high school students say they chose a particular college because it was a good fit. That usually refers to size, cost, and opportunities to pursue a major. We buy a house that is a good fit for our family. Employers choose an applicant who is a good fit for a job. After careful consideration, those may work in our best interests, but what about other choices? Are they the best “fits”?

In today’s scripture, the Holy Spirit prevented the apostle Paul from traveling to Asia to preach the gospel. What? Not preach the gospel? Yes. It’s clear: “Don’t go there, Paul.” It appears God had other plans and a better time frame in mind. Humanly speaking, going to preach the gospel at any time seems to be a fit, but this scripture says otherwise. There would be a better fit later, rather than acting in that moment.

What about us? Do we have better or best fits?

     Do we choose to do something urgent over something else that is important? What have I sacrificed by my choice?

     Do I make a good decision, when I could have made a better one or the best one? What have I lost out on?

     Do I volunteer and respond to a need rather than a call from God? Did I get joy from serving or frustration and relief that a task is done?

     Do I impatiently move to try and “fix” something, instead of wait? What did I compromise by settling?

     Do I proceed, or do I pray first? What do I forfeit by not seeking godly wisdom?

     Did I speak instead of restrain my words? Hmm…that could be costly. We can’t put toothpaste back into a tube. How did that turn out?

    Getting back to my card organization task, I tried several envelopes. Some were too big, others wouldn’t remotely hold the card. The card just didn’t fit.

There is a fit with plans and choices too. I have to pray and look for the best fit, instead of forging ahead. It’s ok to stay put on a rainy day and wait until the sun comes out.