WOW! This will be just a quick post because I need to go and practice cello for my lesson today.
The Lord has spent some time this morning to help me see His Will and how it can work out in my life. I have struggled to visualize how it is to be. I have been given pieces of the puzzle, so to speak, but they didn't seem to be connected. You know how you work on a puzzle -- you start with the edges and then fill in the middle. You do so by looking at details on the piece itself to see how it might be connected to what you already have completed.
God's will is similar. He often gives us disconnected puzzle pieces and asks us to start putting the "puzzle" together. We look at them closely, but they seem to be unrelated. There is no consistent theme or color or shape to help us connect them together. Sometimes we sit for a really long time with just a handful of pieces. Other times, God gives us enough detail to build the frame, the framework of our life according to His will. And, then in God-like fashion, we sit for a time with just the frame built. Those pesky internal pieces still don't seem to go anywhere. They don't fit because much of the surrounding puzzle has yet to be built. In time, over the course of our lives, we add in more and more pieces. Eventually, we are able to place one of the ones we have been holding on to right into it's proper place. We experience great joy when we finally SEE where it fits. It seems like it makes perfect sense -- because throughout the years we have tried to make that piece fit into a bunch of different spots (are you like me? I do that, try and MAKE it fit, until I realize that it won't go and needs to be set aside, AGAIN! LOL!) We do that with our lives too. We try and MAKE God's design work where it is not supposed to work. We try and MAKE it fit. However, we soon realize that we are fitting a "square peg into a round hole" or a puzzle piece with three arms into a spot that needs four. The spot may LOOK SIMILAR and it might even accept the puzzle piece, but in hindsight it won't fit, and it won't work properly. The puzzle will come out looking all "wonky" if we don't admit that the piece we have in hand just doesn't go into that spot on the puzzle face.
So here I am, writing quickly, but thinking about this illustration and how it matches my life. The Lord has filled in His framework. He has given me a handful of puzzle pieces. Some will not fall into place until many years in the future. I recongize shapes on them, I am familiar with the wording and language. I see what they might make, but all the related pieces aren't there yet.
Today, He graciously gave me some more background, some more color and shapes. My puzzle is getting filled in and it is starting to make sense to me. I see what is taking shape and it is exciting. I have a lot of holes still, and I know that most of this puzzle will not be completed until my golden years, much later in my life. Still, I love that it is getting put together and it is taking shape.
My decision today is on whether or not I will stay in Phoenix. I have blogged about this before, but I was conflicted on the answer. Part of me wants to stay...after all...my family is here, and this is where we have lived for the last thirteen years. My life has been here. Part of me, however, does want to move away. I am ready to get out of the heat, ready for some adventure. Part of me sees moving as exciting and new and fresh. I am not being unrealistic either. Moving is expensive. It will bring some hardship, and it will not be easy.
I have been waffling before the Lord. He has already given me His assessment and choice. But, in Gracious God-like fashion, He has told me to choose. He wants me to make this decision, even though I tell Him to make it for me. He has, but I still am uncertain. I am agreeable and acceptable to His Will, but my heart is conflicted over leaving my family. He has asked me to choose now several times. I am stubborn and hard-headed. I want to choose His way because I can see that it makes better sense -- OVERALL.
Today, after the Lord filled in some detail for me, it became clear to me. I understood that where ever I live is OK with Him. His Will is not dependent on location. He has chosen for me to move because IT IS BETTER IN THE LONG RUN -- but it can be just as good to stay put. Some of His Plan has to change to accomodate staying, but His Will is still being accomplished. The choice came down to this:
Stay put, which is easier initially, but brings less reward and opportunity later
Go now, which is harder and more difficult, but brings great reward and much opportunity down the road.
The choice is logically a no-brainer. I just didn't want to make it. I didn't want to say "I am leaving my family to follow after the Lord's Will for my life." I wanted it to be "GOD IS MOVING ME TO ACCOMPLISH HIS WILL," you know, with the whole Charleton Heston/Moses/God thing happening in the background. I wanted bells and whistles and peals of thunder to accompany my choice. This way or that way, no one could say "boo" about it. I mean, who can say "boo" to a de Mille Masterpiece? No one. LOL!
In true God-like fashion, sometimes He chooses to move us quietly and without all that fanfare. Sometimes He does the bells and things. But mostly, He just moves us behind the scenes and asks us to humbly and quietly follow after Him. It is no-big deal to the Lord. We just go because it is where we need to go. He picks himself up, dusts himself off and starts walking. He doesn't make a big stink over it; He just does it.
I think this is what He has been trying to say to me: "Carol, you are making such a big production over this choice. Just pick one and let's get going." I was making it into a life/death decision, believing erroneously that my life would suffer inalterably a bad result if I chose wrongly. In truth, it was just a little choice so that we could get going, get on with the work, and start walking forward. But...until I made it, I was standing still AND HE WAS QUIETLY AND PATIENTLY WAITING FOR ME.
God is so Good to me. He knows me so well. He knows how difficult this decision has been, and I think this is why He wanted me to make it. He knew that I had to be 100% in agreement with Him (even though I was in mind, my heart was conflicted). He was willing to wait for me to feel confident that this was the best choice, and that everything would be OK as a result of making it. No one died. Nothing changed. We just made the decision and so be it.
I love the Lord so much, and I am so resting and trusting in His Provision. My choice is taking us to another state. It means we cannot go until we have the resources to go. That is up to Him. I just need to do what I need to do each day. Until He provides for me, I am here. I will continue to do His Work and will wait for His Hand to move in my life.
God is so Good. His Love and Mercy endure forever!