God is prepared even when we are not
That was the word that shrieked through my mind. I could feel it, that word… It screamed at an ear shattering decibel as it started at the back of my brain did a couple loops around and just as it was about to zip out of my mouth my lips clamped shut. I’m not quite sure how it happened, but somehow, I mustered the ability to just stand there. I couldn’t do anything else for fear I was going to lose it, crumble to the floor and sob uncontrollably. In that moment, I began to quote Isaiah 26:3 “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.”
Sometimes, we don’t feel God’s word. Have you experienced a time like this? I didn’t feel it in this moment so in response I chose to transform it into a chisel by quoting it over and over again using its repetition to chip away at the barrier my flesh had created in my mind.
Life happened to me that day – it happened and when it did, it smacked me square in the chest with a blow that knocked every bit of breath from my lungs. You’ve had one of those days. You’re thinking on it now, a situation happened and there you stood gasping for air feeling like that moment in time was literally sucking every bit of life from your being… these moments are intense, and thankfully – they don’t happen often…
For me, this one was in the midst of a battle. I was waging a spiritual war – I was dedicated, and prayerfully seeking the Lord. I knew he was going to get me through the situation I was facing, because he promised – I just didn’t know how and this day, in this moment was not supposed to happen. NO, I thought God and I had a deal. I thought we were on the same page, and this day was not part of OUR plan. The peak of my battle wasn’t supposed to come for another couple of MONTHS – it wasn’t supposed to happen on this day, and there I stood paralyzed thinking “WAIT!!! I didn’t get to pray about this day, being the day. I’m not prepared. I need another day to pray more strategically, I need another day to pray even harder… I JUST NEED ANOTHER DAY.”
No matter the whining, or amount of crazy I drove my husband with all my “what-if” scenarios – the day went on without seeming to care that this was one of the most pivotal days of my life. My husband, rock steady and calm took me by the hand, and together we faced the day head on. With us, we took the promise God had given and I allowed Isaiah 26:3 to be the legs on which I stood, and just as quickly as the moment hit, it left, and just as out of nowhere as this spiritual battle commenced – it vanished even quicker – and as it did it left my head spinning in awe over the truth that God’s ways are higher then ours. As I emerged from that place still holding the hand of my husband – God humbled me as I felt him impress so strongly that HE is prepared even when WE are not.
Proverbs 19:21, “There are many devices in a man’s heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand.”
Too often, I try to figure God out.
Too often WE try to figure God out.
We try to think we know what he has planned. We even feel pretty sure we know the way he is ordering our steps – and then life happens and the way we thought we were going veers completely away from the path we were so confident we were on. It’s in these moments of seeming deviation that if we are not careful we can step into an overwhelmed mess of unnecessary stress as we battle the release of our imagined control in what we think we know by pushing against the unseen and unknown goodness he’s moving us toward.
The battle I described to you – it was big – and you better believe I had a plan. I did, and then the unexpected happened and the control I thought I had – was gone. As I reflect, I laugh when I think of the silly girl God must see when he looks at me. I’m so thankful for his patience. In this situation, he gave me a much-needed attitude check as he reminded me that he is the one in control and that he didn’t need my plan– in fact, the plan he outlined was far greater then the one I had in mind. He was part of my plan – and in it I imagined my faith to grow. BUT His plan – grew my faith in a way I never would have imagined and has taken me to a place in him I never knew existed… and he loved me enough to take me there in midst of all my pushing against, uncertainty, and complaints of not being prepared.
I wonder, when we think of our insatiable need to be in the know and have control – what is it keeping us from in our relationship with God? Is it limiting His light from shining as brightly as he has purposed it? Is it the thing that stops us from being the conduit of faith to those in our realm of influence? Is it what causes us to hide the talents he has given to be used in our hands?
What would happen if we could just rest in our relationship with Jesus. Could we rest for a moment in acknowledgement of his sovereignty – accepting that he is never taken by surprise? Could we believe that he had a plan for our days before they began? Could we believe for a moment that our prayers are enough? Could we just take him at his word and understand that he knows what we are facing? Could we be reminded that he saw it’s beginning, and he knows it’s ending. He doesn’t need our plan – he simply needs our trust. He sees all – he knows all – and in those moments when life catches us off guard we need to be reminded that no matter where we are, what we are facing, what we are thinking, or what we are feeling – God is prepared even when we are not.
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