Change, Hope, Faithfulness

Luke and I were standing in our kitchen about a year ago, when he turned to me and said, "Do you feel it?"

"Feel it?"

"Yeah.  There's something going on.  Something moving.  Something...changing."

I admit, fear was the first thing to flood my brain.  I'm not all that good at change.  I'm the kind of girl who finds the *best* way to arrange a room's furniture...and then I leave it that way For.ev.er.  and ever.  Amen.

It's ironic really.  I didn't want change, even though I wasn't particularly happy where I was.  Well, I was happy.  But I was also perpetually frustrated.  Feeling hopeless.  Lying awake at night staring at the ceiling and wondering if I'd be better serving my family if I went back into the work force.  Like most of the country in the past couple of years, I was worried about money.

Ugh.  I hate how those words sound as I read them on the page.  I was worried.  About money.  Gross.

And to be honest, I felt horribly guilty.  I was always SO conservative and careful with money.  What happened?!  When did I get so reckless...when did my britches get so dang small?

There was one particular night that I couldn't sleep.  It seemed that every corner we turned, the house of cards that we'd so meticulously built over the years was crumbling a bit more.  That's the thing about card houses....it only takes but the slightest breeze to get it falling.

And it seemed to be getting awfully windy in my corner of the world.

I was lying there in bed that night, thinking about all the dreams I'd had for the kind of childhood I wanted to give my kids.  I began to feel the full weight of what we'd done pressing down.  Not on me....on THEM.  My children.  My bad choices...my arrogance...was hurting them.  Until that moment, I'd never felt an emotional pain that literally made me want to pull my own hair out.  I could not stop sobbing.

It wasn't long after that night of tears and guilt that I was reading my Bible and came across a verse that felt like it was just for me in that moment...the verse about Jesus coming to give us abundant life.  Luke happened to be walking through the room and I asked him, "Is this it?  Is this our abundant life?  Did our mistakes keep us from what He wants for us?  I don't feel abundance.  I feel fearful and trapped."

I don't remember his reply.  I was too consumed with the thought "This is not abundance."

Of course, Jesus didn't come to give us financial abundance.  The abundance He offers is of the spirit.  Of hope, joy, love, peace, confidence.  But those were the things I was missing because of our finances...and that was my battle.

Not to fill my bank account, but to offer my guilt and worry to Him, and to let Him fill me with something better...to replace my sobbing with joyful singing despite my circumstances.

And so it goes, this walk with Jesus.  I find myself looking and worrying about the path I seem to be headed down, and He lovingly says "No need to worry, child.  This walk is not about the path, but about the fact that I'm doing this with you!"

The One who parted the sea is with me.  The One who turned water to wine is with me.  The One who fed thousands with a few fishes and loaves of bread is with me. The one who loved and healed the outcasts is here with me.  The One who loves me enough to die for me is here with me.

Of course, we know the way it is with Him.  It seems that as soon as I turn my worry over to Him and simply live my life....that's when things truly change.  Always in my heart, and even sometimes in my physical world.

Decide I'd be happy to be single my whole life....find Luke.
Give up on my passion to have children...get pregnant.
Settle on just buying some new carpet and paint for the tiny old house....find the house that fits us and that we can afford.
Trust in Him for even our finances....watch our financial future blossom as from the ashes.

The sense of change....the finally giving up of the guilt and fear...the trusting Him whatever the path....it all brought us to one place:  our knees.

Luke and I literally sat on the floor in our home office, held hands, and handed everything we'd managed to take control of back over to the Lord.  We offered Him our dreams and asked Him to either make our dreams come true or to change our dreams to be what He wants for us.  We were at our end, and it felt so wonderful because it's only at our end that we came face to face with HIM.

The very next DAY? (no kidding!)  We "somehow" found our way into another flip property (Luke's dream).

And several months later, my Rodan+Fields business "dropped" into my lap.

Truly...any success we have...any dream that comes true...is of Him.  For Him.  Evidence of His love.

So, fast forward from a year ago to today.  That girl who was fearful of change even though her current situation was crushing her....

Well, I was recently talking to Luke and thinking about our future.  I said "You know, I've always been a planner and I've always had a feeling that I knew what the future might hold because I was working to get there.  But now? I have NO CLUE where we'll be in a year.  NO CLUE where we're headed....and I love it!  Day to day, just looking to Him and saying 'now what?'....it's exhilarating!  THIS is living!"

I have true and lasting hope that I haven't had in a very long time.  And...

I will hold fast to the confession of my hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful
(Heb 10:23)

Angie  – (3/24/2011 06:57:00 PM)  

Thank you for sharing this! I was online searching for a new crochet dishrag pattern and stumbled on your blog....started reading and wow was encouraged. We serve the same FAITHFUL God ... I've been anxious these last few days with all the talk of school districts cutting teachers and or salaries ... my husband is a teacher and I am a homemaker. Thanks for sharing! God has never let us down and He is our provider.

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