The last year or so has been a very difficult time for me. In my honest and light filled moments, I can see God’s hand at work, and I know He’s doing something big. When the darkness starts to set in, like the little rain cloud in cartoons, above my head, I vacillate between feeling like God has abandoned me or in complete terror for whatever ‘big’ thing He is trying to do. My work has been to find the hope and trust inside and hold onto that regardless of how external circumstances appear. I’ve realized, recently, that a big obstacle to holding onto hope and trust is the judgment I have felt. Though some of it is a manifestation of my own struggles and the lies I believe, it has been difficult when the reason, “God asked me to,” has not been enough – even for believers. As I look back on those times, most of them have taught me crucial things, and I’ve seen God’s blessing in amazing ways. I am still waiting for the ‘point’ of some recent decisions, but I have to believe He will provide as He has in the past.
I recently made a decision to do something God asked me to do. I am sure I heard Him clearly, and I fought Him, per my usual process. But only a couple of people know what I did, and only a couple more knew I was even considering it. The other day, God asked me why I hadn’t told anyone else. I had wanted my answer to simply be because it hadn’t really come up in conversation with anyone, but I knew that wasn’t really the reason. I was afraid of more judgment. From human perspective, my decision seemed impractical, and I wasn’t feeling up for defending my decision – or the feeling of failure that has been haunting me over the last year. Then God asked me why I felt like I had to defend a decision that was made in faith – made because my heart’s desire was to follow Him.
There is a song by Matt Maher called Your Love Defends Me. He wants to be my defender. When I feel like I’m all alone, His love defends me. He is the strength of my soul, and He is with me in this fight.
If I believe this, then I have to also believe that where I am at, my present circumstances, have nothing to do with my ability or worth – that I am not a failure – but are simply where God has me as He works in me and my environment for His perfect timing to open the next path He has for me.
Almost two weeks ago, I sold my car. I had argued with Him for almost two months about the practicality of that decision. I’m in the middle of a job hunt – a need for steady income. I’m fighting depression, which gets worse with isolation. What possible good could come from selling my car? Yes, it could provide some temporary relief from the financial stress, but it would be very temporary, and I still need to find steady income. Is selling my car giving up on finding a job?
This is where my trust and hope needs to kick in, and I have to hold on tight. If I believe God asked me to sell my car (which sold less than 15 hours after I listed it – by someone who drove over two hours to buy it), then I have to believe that God is going to provide. He knows what I need, and is more than capable of providing. He will either provide a vehicle in an unexpected way; or He will provide the finances to procure a vehicle in an unexpected way; or He will provide a job that I can either get to by walking or public transportation.
And as I wait for that provision, I will get out of my own way and go after what I truly want – to write. I have two finished books, and about five of them floating through my head. I have given into fear as I never heard back from the first agent to whom I submitted my books. But this is what I want. I want to write. That’s the main reason I have been looking for a part time job instead of going back to work full time. I want time to write. I want to get the books out of my head onto ‘paper’. I want to believe that God wants to give me the desires of my heart.
Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. – Psalm 37:4