So this is Annie Downs’ entry on Nicole Kidman’s appearance at The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. And it was just wonderful. I remember how God also made me experience this truth in my life. Back in college, I had a friend. We were very close. We had so many common interests – books, sarcasm, college (mass communications), chick flicks, letters, food, card games – so we bonded quite easily. Later on in our friendship I discovered that she had issues with attachment. She would be very demanding of my attention and my time. She would have emotional outbursts with me and then later on apologize in the sweetest way possible. We would talk about it several times and in those conversations, I thought things were resolved already but it an emotional outburst would happen again resulting into more exchanges of hurtful words.
It finally came to the point that I decided to let the friendship go. One of my closest friends who knew the both of us advised for it as well because she saw how draining it was for us.
I still remember clearly that moment when I gave her my letter where I told her that I could not spend time with her for the mean time. I told her that the cycle we were on would just drive us mad and I did not want to become bitter or scared of her. I told her that there were many people willing to help her, but she had to want to be helped as well. When I gave her that letter and she read it, I knew that she was angry with me. I knew that she didn’t understand. I knew that she felt abandoned. But still, I had to walk away. And as I was literally walking away from her, it just hit me. That realization. I suddenly realized that not so long ago, I was her. I was that girl asking my ex-boyfriend why he was leaving me when we could still work it out – was I not good enough? Did I not try hard enough? To all of my questions, he just answered, “it is for the best.” But I never understood it fully until that moment. Indeed, it was for the best.
And I probably will never know if my friend would understand that but I just have to leave that to God. I realized that He does know. He knows what’s best for us, He knows what to allow and what not to allow, He knows our what ifs, our could have beens… And He sees it all. I take comfort in that during my life’s seasons of uncertainty.
So I thank Annie Downs for writing this. I am sure that it will give comfort to a lot of people who have questioned their decisions or place in life.
I watched them the other night, Jimmy being in legitimate shock at Nicole being interested enough in him to hang out and see if there was any chemistry. He had no idea that was her intention then.
That day, she walked away disappointed. And still single.
That day, he was oblivious. And still single.
Eventually they married other people, had kids, live way different lives.
And as I watched that segment, I felt God whisper to me,
I think about myself. I think about my single friends. I think about the worries we have (I have) of being alone forever. I think about that time I cried at my dentist’s office when he said, “the right guy at the wrong time is still the wrong guy, Annie,” because I knew he was telling me the truth even though I was sure the character in question was (a) the right guy at (b) the right time.
And I cannot even list for you the amount of times I’ve thought a relationship was going to work and it didn’t. But I can list the reasons that scroll through my mind every time it happens.
(I could. But I won’t.)
Yet here sit two celebrities, seemingly not hindered by budget or looks or opportunity or any of the lies we hear in our heads as to why we are single, and they missed a chance.
They missed the wrong; but in time, they got the right.
I needed to see that.
I needed to see that sometimes it just doesn’t work out because sometimes it just doesn’t work out. I needed to watch as two people, ten years later, finally see the story through the same lens. I needed to be reminded that God’s sovereign hand is tightly gripped around my little life. I needed to remember that for all the times I’ve walked away from a man and thought, “dang, he is NOT interested in me” and felt deeply alone and sad, Nicole Kidman has felt that, the guy had no idea, and the truth? God knew all along.
God. Knew. All. Along.
He knows when I walk away disappointed. He knows my story. But He knows the story of each man I encounter too. God knows the chances I feel I have missed. He knows that often what I call a “miss,” He calls a “rescue.”
He knows when I walk in a room full of the wrong guy, I will still try to make one (or two) right. And they don’t play along and I’m sad. He knows better for me will come. And maybe better and I have been in the same room already. I don’t know. God knows.
And whether you are Nicole Kidman or Annie Downs or [fill in your name here], I think this story is great reminder that He knows you. He sees you. There is not an encounter in your life in which He has not been near. And He is working ALL things together for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
We will never know how many near misses and misunderstood stories and random circumstances all had to dance together to get us right here, with the right people, at the right time.
But He knows.