There are times God has to practically shove us out of our nest and send us flying into the unknown, because we’re not willing to take a risk on our own. Whether it’s God’s plans or ours sometimes we just need to move.
This is exactly where I was when we moved from Colorado to Mississippi. The transition was huge and I made it clear to God and to my husband that I’d had enough change for a while. This was Paul’s time to shine and grow in ministry or whatever else, not mine.
I intended to hunker down, re-calibrate and recover. Apparently God had other plans.
Little did I know I was about to learn how to fall or fly – maybe a little of both. Either way the nest I thought I was building and hiding out in was being pulled apart piece by piece.
God cares more about uncovering the potential, passion and purpose lying dormant in you and I, than we do. He will unearth our insecurities, weaknesses and limiting beliefs to pull out all the gold that exists underneath.
This is a gift in the end, I promise, although it doesn’t feel like it in real time. Especially for an introvert who retreats from the world to recover and refresh.
“Transformation often begins NOT when something new begins, but when something old falls apart.” – Laura Meyer (quote adopted from Richard Rohr) on the Jennifer Allwood Podcast
It maybe what we desire, or what we think we want that takes us on an alternate route.
You may try a door. It may open and you begin to walk through it. It’s not wrong to try, otherwise how will you ever know? These lessons can be so valuable.
It’s the in between period, the trying to figure out if it’s the way you should go or not, that can be so hard. I’ve heard several people say, “Doors open. Doors close. It can be hell in the hallway.”
God can give us peace to move forward when all the facts look impossible, just like God can give us peace to walk away no matter how great the offer appears. God sees more, knows more and His plans far exceed ours.
What can be devastating is ignoring the signs either way and jumping ahead of God. “Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord” (Psalm 27:14).
The key is found in 2 Samuel 5:23 where it says, “And again David asked the Lord what to do.” In the scriptures that follow God gives David some very specific instructions as to the signs to watch for, to know when to move forward and exactly how to fight the battle he was facing.
Whether God speaks clearly to your heart, works through circumstances, the wisdom of others, His word, a sense of peace or not, or all of the above – if you’re asking God-He will be faithful to show you.
Know when to press through or pass by. You may not know, so you keep walking, trying, and asking God what He would have you to do each step of the way. God will show you.
When trying a door my prayer is: God, either confirm or reveal.
Confirm this is what we’re supposed to do, as we take steps forward, or reveal it’s the wrong way to go. Maybe this is exactly what the scripture means in Proverbs 16:9 when it says, “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”
It’s a relief really, to know that God is working for our good and ultimately knows what’s best for us.
If we’re following Christ, if our heart is aligned with desiring His will over our own, and we’re sensitive to His voice, we CAN trust God to determine our steps in spite of our plans or a lack there of!
Our Plans or God’s? Maybe it doesn’t even matter. God can use it all!
“Let’s go across to the outpost of those pagans,” Jonathan said to his armor bearer. “Perhaps the LORD will help us, for nothing can hinder the LORD. He can win a battle whether he has many warriors or only a few” (1 Samuel 14:6)!
Just like Jonathan, we don’t always know what the outcome will be or if it’s something we should do. That’s when you take a step by faith and say, “Perhaps the Lord will help us,” knowing that either way, God’s got our back.
It can actually be a huge relief to have the courage to walk away when you sense it’s just NOT the right way to go. A little discomfort is so much better than an extended period of misery.
Thank goodness God is bigger than our plans, decisions and our mistakes. And maybe, as we learn to surrender to His will a little sooner each time, we will see how gracious and loving His intentions are towards us.
So if you’re concerned you’ll somehow miss your purpose, or not find God’s will – I promise you – God is greater!
He’s not caught off guard by what you and I throw His way. He’s already made provision for our limitations and fickle decisions.
Take courage friend, God’s got your back!
With much love and grace,
For More: If you missed Part One of this series here you go: God’s Plans or Ours? Maybe it doesn’t matter at all. – Part One