They experienced huge life changes in their early lives as both of their families immigrated from the Netherlands. From their shared bath water to Uncle Lieuwe coming by for their first car ride. From living with the sounds of war surrounding their home to working in milk delivery at a young age, bringing glass milk bottles into homes and placing them in the fridge when homeowners were not at home. Life was different back then and they have experienced dramatic life changes over their 70+ years. I am sure there were many times where they uttered or wondered, What is next?
And then these two young adults met and fell in love and married and started a family. A girl from New Jersey and a Canadian fellow who was starting seminary. They began a family and established in Grand Rapids and they lived in the neighborhood where racial tensions were high and they called their parents every Sunday and they had a TV in their living room and over time, times changed. And I am sure there were many times where they (or their parents) uttered or wondered, What is next?
And over time their five children grew and became more independent and lived like normal teenagers and were introduced to computers and printers and one day their dad came home with a phone in a bag that could be used while in the car and times were changing and the days of shared bath water seemed long ago and the kids were excited about all the future held and I would guess there were days when the parents may have uttered or wondered, What is next?
And time passed and family numbers increased and computers became laptops and tablets and wireless became real, seeing someone on the phone no longer was unheard of and cars had back up cameras and blue tooth and children had cell phones and communication was feasible around the world. And it was hard to imagine what could be next…..
And then yesterday I was watching TV and there was a news clip on the upcoming Auto Show. There was a man from the Netherlands talking about the new cars. You could sit in them and have a demo and the focus of this vehicle was the pull down table where the driver could place the lap top or eat a meal or read a book. Because this car had the new feature of driving itself.
I shuddered and stopped in my tracks. I began to wonder why we would go to this extreme and how could it be beneficial to our world to have self driving cars and drivers who could multitask to that degree. Something in t does not feel right to me. And I began to consider the thoughts of my Oma and Opa and my Pake and Beppe and even the thoughts of my parents perhaps, when they saw the changes of our world and uttered why and what is next. And I am grateful that they are people who embraced change even when they wondered and their resistance did not keep them from pursuing new things. And so I turned off the TV and began to wonder about my own life in the coming 30 to 40 years and wonder what I will see. I can imagine there will be more than one more time when I will utter or wondered, What is next?
It is my hope I will ebb and flow and grow and change with an abundance of grace as I stand in awe and wonder of what is next!