if you were to ask me how my life would turn out, 6 months, a year, 2 years, 5 years, 10 years ago, each response would've been different. each response shows me the futility of actually trying to figure out what my life would look like. and even if i don't feel like i've changed, others who have known me throughout have told me that throughout each period of time, i have given off a sense of growth.
like the joker in "the dark knight" says, i used to think i had plans, that i was a schemer. that i had all these machinations and ideas of how my life was going to go, and the root of all that was comfort. comfortability with the status quo, with life as it is. and also like the joker says, nobody panics when things go "according to plan". even when the plan is horrifying. it took me a while to realize that they were in fact horrifying.
i asked a friend recently if he had any regrets in his life, and he told me, "i'd like to think that at the end of the day, all my mistakes will amount to something. will i live with some guilt? of course, the consequences of my actions will live with me. but does that mean that they served no purpose? i don't believe so."
and little by little, i realize that if you were to chart out every step of my life, you could see that things had a purpose. it's crazy but this is one of the things that i cling to when i try to revive the miniscule shred of faith that i still have. this is the evidence i try to keep in mind when i try to submit and give up control of any plan or idea of where my life should be going to God.
my birthday has always been a sensitive time for me. strange momentous, lesson learning things happen on my birthdays. a long time ago in my teenage youth, the beginning of my many escapades of emotional turmoil, i had been romanticizing this vision of being in love with a girl. as someone who has been told that "you're the kind of person that likes to blow things up in your mind", it was easy for me to become enchanted with it all.
i remember watching a movie on my birthday with some friends and remembering seeing this guy and girl, who i thought was a couple, right in front of me, and thinking how nice that kind of love looked and thinking about a girl who i was interested in at the time. at the end of the movie, the "couple" turned around, and the girl happened to be the girl i was interested in, and the guy was her brother.
needless to say i pretty much had a heart attack afterwards, but looking back, i think i was being subtly (or not so subtly) told that a relationship with a significant other isn't the only way we as humans are relational beings, as we sometimes make it out to be. and that sometimes God will use his sense of humor to not only play sick jokes on me, but to teach me something from his concoctions of crazy circumstance.
it is this ineffable persistence of coincidence that tip me when i'm on the fence that my life does have some sort of purpose, however murky and indeterminate it may be.