By this we know love, that He laid down His life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? Little Children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. 1 John 3:16 - 18
"Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God"
- Corrie Ten Boom
This quote was on a birthday card I recently recieved from my brother and sister in law for my 30th birthday. They had picked it out for me many weeks before having no idea that I would need to be reminded of just what it said on that day especially.
30 is a hard age for many women to turn. A big milestone. Maybe not "old" quite yet, but it certainly is a stark reminder that you're not a kid anymore. Birthdays tend to be the time of year that I take a good, hard look at my life over any other time of the year. And this one was especially that way.
Everyone wants their life to have meaning, purpose and a direction. We all have dreams and plans for our lives and do our best to accomplish those. Each one of us has God-given desires, passions and giftings that shouldn't be wasted, but should be used. Looking at the direction of our lives can bring excitement, but there are times it can also bring lots of confusion and frustration.
Prov 16:9 The mind of a man plans his ways, but the Lord directs his steps.
There are many desires of my heart. Good desires! Desires I believe are from God!
But they are also desires that have yet to be fulfilled.
My "dream" for as long as I can even remember has been to be a wife, mommy and missionary. In a way I have been able to play a "mommy" role to some little ones through foster care and I can be a missionary wherever I am, so in a way those dreams have already been fulfilled...
they've just not been fulfilled in the way I pictured and I planned it would be.
Sometimes the path of our lives can seem so certain. You see what lies ahead and are looking forward to what you think your destination is, putting one foot in front of the other to reach it...
but there are also the sudden turns that can leave us reeling and somewhat lost for a bit.
We have a choice as to what to do in those situations though.
We can allow them to send us crashing down in despair or we can fix our eyes on our Maker - trusting Him - knowing that He knows what He's doing even if we can't see it.
He's got the map!
I am thankful to have twists and turns in my life because of the growth they bring even though they can be so painful and stretching and confusing.
They help me to see that I am not the one in control.
That I can't fix anything.
That I am weak.
That I am totally and completely lost without my Guide!
It puts me in a right position of full dependance on God alone. More than anything, I want the desires of my heart to be GOD's desires for me! I know that His perfect plans are for my good and for His glory!
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and not on your own understanding. In ALL your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path. Prov 3:5
I admit that I don't understand some pieces of my life or why God has me where I am right now.
But I do trust Him.
Sometimes I am able to look back and see His merciful hand in my life and can see why some of those twists and turns were necessary and GOOD.
He is molding me and shaping me. I am dirty, muddy clay and He is the skilled craftsman - creating something that one day will be beautiful. There are a great many things I don't understand... but I've realized that I don't have to.
That's what trust is!
I simply need to rely completely on God alone and not on what I can understand! Our joy and contentment does not count on the circumstances we find ourselves in. I am still learning to be content and joyful and to let go of my own dreams. This doesn't mean I can't still desire them, but it's the deliberate action of sacrifice, trusting God to do as He wills with my life, serving Him in whatever way will bring Him glory and desiring His plan above my own.
I am embarking on a path that will "accomplish" one of those dreams. Not to be a "check off the list", but something I think God has been preparing me for and directing my heart to for many many years. I think it's finally the right time to go where I've always wanted to go and the Lord is opening doors! I'm trusting Him as I step through each one and I pray I will be content and continue to trust Him when I come to a closed one.
...Those closed doors are often hard to accept.
I know I will be scared, lonely, dirty, sometimes sick, lost and overwhelmed. I can't say I'm ready for it, but who ever feels completely prepared?
I am asking for prayers in these next months ahead. I need wisdom and discernment to seek and find what the Lord has for me in Uganda. I want to be used by Him in whatever way He wants!
I will share more information in the weeks ahead, but for now I just ask that you join me in prayer as I take this next step on the journey God has me on!