Isaiah 43:19 (The Message)
Forget about what's happened;
don't keep going over old history.
Be alert, be present. I'm about to do something brand-new.
It's bursting out! Don't you see it?
There it is! I'm making a road through the desert,
rivers in the badlands.
An opportunity, one that appeared so right it felt like it had been placed in my path. Yet God closed the door in a way that left me feeling like I forgot to move my hand and left my fingers throbbing in the threshold. In a matter of hours, someone close to me received a similar opportunity with all the pieces of the puzzle falling into place. While extremely proud for her great news, something inside hurt deeper. Discouraged, I opened my devotional guide, and the verses above spoke so vividly to my heart.
The last couple of years have seemed the hardest for me physically, spiritually, emotionally. I'm not saying they haven't been good years, in fact they have been great. I'm just seeing myself have to work harder at things than ever before. I'm being asked to step up to the plate...being a parent is no longer changing diapers and making sure the baby is fed. The physically challenging hours of early life are replaced by the emotionally challenging times of preteens. Being on the income side of a non profit in this economy is nothing short of miracle making...believe me, we've learned to stretch budgets like Jesus did with those five loaves and three fishes. Balancing time for God, family, work and myself seems to be a daily challenge.
I'm being called to grow in spirit to, to step out of my comfort zone and be bold. Sharing my faith is something that hasn't been comfortable for me, and that challenge has presented itself more and more lately.
No this opportunity would not have solved the world's problems, and I think the no answer I received was another reminder that our Father grows us and shapes us into what he wants us to be...through experiences every day.
The lessons God spoke to my heart through this experience:
Seek God even in the small things. You don't have to hold back and wait to make a big ask with God. He's happy to help with every day things too. Imagine how much easier our lives would be if we would give EVERYTHING to God.
Be comforted in the voice that tells you you are walking in his path. Getting a firm "NO" hurt, but at the same time, I have peace because I know my Father wouldn't have said no unless he had another plan for me. Whether its something amazing that reveals itself at a later time, or the privilege to continue on the path I am on, I am comforted knowing I am where I am supposed to be.
Be still enough to hear that voice. In the midst of this opportunity were many alone driving days. There were three o'clock wake up calls too. I was seeking his voice, and I heard it clearly. So many other times I hurry through life and barely slow down enough to say hello to him, much less listen to his will for my life.
Forget about the past. Even though I feel inadequate in my life's roles, I can't dwell on the failures or the lack of perfection desired of a type A, I must look to the future. No matter how bad the past may be, the future is bright. He promises us that.
This post has taken me a couple of weeks to sort through, as have the emotions that have gone with it. I leave you with a quote that also spoke to me:
"The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time."