Click above to listen to Higher from my third album Draw Near as you read. If you enjoy, consider purchasing the song, album download, or CD from iTunes or stantonlanier.com (where sheet music is also available).
Higher was inspired by 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.”
What has happened recently that made you wonder why?
Are you feeling defeated right now? Discouraged? Something got you down? Bear with me through this story that happened two summers ago. I hope you are nudged closer to overcoming whatever is deflating you. “It” doesn’t have to win…
It was a Friday morning off to a great start. I was up early, had some quiet time, and was ready for a good day. After breakfast my wife said, “You could go ahead and fix the faucet this morning, before it gets hot.” I knew she was right. One of our outdoor faucets had a small leak, dripping about one gallon per day. I adjusted my plans, set my mind to checking this off my list, and thought, “replacing a washer shouldn’t take too long, but even if it does, I will still maintain a positive attitude.”
“Let’s get this done and finish a new blog post this morning too,” I thought. I borrowed some special tools from two neighbors and set to work. First, I turned off the water line to the house. Then, I removed the faucet. I quickly realized that none of the washers in the assortment package would fit. I was frustrated, but kept a good attitude. It meant a return trip to Home Depot. Maybe it would be easier to just get a new faucet. There wasn’t one. Our faucet was too old. My good attitude turned to groaning.
This led me to a plumbing supply store where there wasn’t a new faucet, but I was given a new washer at no charge. I smiled as I walked back to the car with this unexpected gift. But back home the washer seemed a little too thick. The faucet would not re-attach no matter how hard I pushed and turned. I began to talk to it, telling it who was boss. I went back to the plumbing supply store to get a different washer, and discovered they close from 11am to 12pm every day(!). My groaning turned to frustration! “Why is this happening!” I cried in my head. “This is such a waste of time!” I was feeling hopeless and defeated.
I went back to Home Depot to find the correct washer. It only came in packs of ten. I came home, put one in place, and the faucet still would not re-attach. I stared at it, pushed it, hit it with a hammer, put my foot on it, anything I could think of to make it screw back on. My frustration had turned to anger! I knew there had to be a way. I tried loosening another nut closer to the top. If this was the solution, it would create enough clearance to re-attach the back of the faucet, then I would have to re-tighten the smaller bolt to have everything good as new. It worked! Amazing! It was something simple, but had taken an hour to discover. Then, the final step. I turned the water line back on, and . . . no more leak! It was over! I had defeated the faucet, and my positive attitude reappeared out of hiding.
I would much rather be creating, practicing or sharing my music, but living in the present meant to fix this problem first (just so you know, sometimes I do call a plumber). Life’s interruptions somehow can be good for the soul, and can make room for greater things to happen. There is an ebb and flow, a pacing to each day. When I feel like time is being wasted, in fact good things can be happening. I just may not know what they are. It keeps things in perspective when every day doesn’t go my way. Perhaps tomorrow more will happen than seems humanly possible.
Life can get me down. I can be anxious about the future. Can you relate? Are you feeling defeated or discouraged by something big or small? Live in the present. Take one step at a time. Know the grace of a new day is coming with tomorrow morning’s sunrise. Remember God’s ways are higher than our ways.
How can Isaiah 55:8-9 speak into your life today?
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. — Matthew 6:34
“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. — Isaiah 55:8-9