That's what happened to me this past weekend.
Only instead of it being a disappointment, it was a gift.
A few days ago I boarded an airplane to Colorado to meet up with Stasi Eldredge for a Captivating retreat. The Eldredges have been special friends to us over the years, and I needed time to soak in His love for me, and seek Him for some specific questions I'm asking.
I boarded the plane in all my independence, determined to start and finish Brene Brown's book Daring Greatly by the time I came home (a review will come). I watched people, and chatted with a five year-old flying with his grandparents. I stared out the window at the beautiful clouds and said a prayer for my old boss Buddy, who once told me to spend more of my days staring out windows and dreaming.
I met up with a friend in Denver, found our rental car and we drove to Frontier Ranch (next time C.Estoll, I WILL swing by and see you and your lovely wife). Drowsy from travel and the long drive, we slipped into a Starbucks and chuckled at the teen paranormal romance fiction section. (seriously?)
I felt strong, capable, and brimming with excitement at what was to come.
God's going to give me answers, I thought. I'm going to come home with a road map.
The aspens dripped golden leaves. Rolling hills stood outlined by gorgeous snow-capped mountains. The air was crisp. I felt an eagerness to meet with Him, like butterflies on a first date.
Session after session we were pointed to Scripture. To the character of God, and His love for us, and His sovereignty over us.
Session after session I asked questions.
Session after session He redirected.
It wasn't that He wasn't listening, or that He didn't have answers. He was just asking way better questions than I ever could.
I journaled an obscene amount.
And sat alone.
I smelled the trees.
I ordered a milkshake and ate it, all 600 calories worth.
One afternoon Nikolle and I dangled our feet from a log and chatted until the weather turned chill.
The other afternoon I paid $10 to overcome my fear of heights. I harnessed up, walked a high wire, side-stepped across a broken bridge of boards 30 feet high, slid down a zip line 50 feet high (IN THE RAIN--helllloooooo am I awesome?!), and jumped off a platform 40 feet high. Even though my hands trembled, my teeth clinched, and I had tears streaming down my face when it was over, I DID it, something that required more courage and faith than I thought I had.
I snuggled with 300 ladies watching Pride and Prejudice, passing chocolate, and I whooped loudly when Mr. Darcy meets Elizabeth Bennett in the foggy morning dawn: "If, however, your feelings have changed, I must tell you that you have bewitched me body and soul and I love, I love, I love you. I never wish to be parted from you from this day forward."
One night we sang to Jesus for over an hour--a whole hour 400 women standing hands raised--my voice raspy from singing--celebrating Him for Who He is.
I felt the presence of angels. And I broke agreements I had made about myself. I am nothing special. I am not a good mother. God is too busy for my little worries. [There were many more I won't share.]
As I type I'm sitting at DIA, having missed my flight. And I feel filled to the BRIM.
I have no road map. Not a single question answered.
But my canteen is filled with water. He gave me elfin bread for the journey. I'm refreshed, renewed, and restored.
The best word to sum up my heart: grateful.