As most of you saw on my last post, I have been filled with a ton of gratitude lately while at the same time, lacking a lot of concrete direction in my life. In a recent conversation with someone I was discussing how, for the majority of my life, I have always had an audible relationship with the Lord. When he gives direction, I hear him speak and it is usually very clear. Lately though, I have felt as though the Lord is seemingly very quiet.
Something that I have come to realize is that when stepping in, faith can feel heavy, burdensome and confusing. Sounds fun, right? I think that a large part of the reason that I did not write a lot over the past year is because I do not want to paint God in a bad light. I have thought about and talked about how fulfilling and difficult it is to follow your calling with friends who are actively doing the same thing and there is an ever-present undertone of, should it be this hard?
Let me be clear in my continually developing thoughts on this, it is hard. It can feel as though you have completely lost yourself, your marbles, your logic but that is absolutely the whole point. Every single time I have come to the end of myself and my strength the Lord picked me up, talked me through it, and reminded me that this is NOT about MY strength. This is not about what I will be able to accomplish, it is about what He wants to accomplish through me.
I feel like I have lost myself at times because in reality, I have. I am constantly ridding myself of old, life-sucking habits, that do not produce fruit in me, my family, or God's kingdom. For some people this sounds torcherous, submissive, and weak. Why would I give up my dreams or hopes for something completely unknown? This is the day in age when we set a goal, go after it and achieve it. Why should we have to pause and pray about everything - let's just get things done! Everything should be in our control or within our power to accomplish but it is not. Releasing what I considered best for me has helped me to realize that I didn't even know what my best was. I wrote about a lot of the positive experiences that have come as a result of stepping into God's will but those came from a lot of introspection, meditation on God's will and lots of time in God's word.
I may not be at a stage in life where my material things reflect richness to the outside world but I hope that the joy within me shines brighter and is a visible example of that "something" different. Additionally, even during the times that I feel as though the Lord is distant and I am simply floating down the river of His will, He comes through through the voices of others. Never discount the spiritual wisdom of those you respect and trust within your life because they may be the very mouthpiece of the Lord during your most confusing times.
I realize that there are those that read what I write and don't believe what I believe. They don't belive that faith is worth giving up their dreams, comforts or luxuries and believe me when I say, I do not fault you for it. A walk into God's will and a relationship with Him is a personal choice. For me, that choice, that promise, has become the most life-giving, fulfilling, and rewarding journey of my life.
Today I would simply ask you, does your way fulfill you? Has it proved fruitful in all areas of your life, mind, body and soul? Or does it ever feel like there is something missing? If you feel like there is something missing, trust that there is someone out there pursuing your heart at all times. If you seek it, you will hear the knocking. Consider answering that knock. What do you have to lose? More importantly, what do you have to gain?