I cannot tell you how it feels to finally give "birth" to my plans. I have labored intensively to figure out what I am to do, and how I am to do it. I have considered so many options, trying to analyze everything, just to make sure I have all the details identified. Then I tend to go over things, again and again and again. This whole process has taken it's toll on me. It has worn me out, just with mental stress. I have been praying and praying, hoping to finally get to resting point; but it seemed like my prayers (while bringing me comfort), were not getting me to a resolution.
I think the turning point came last week when I finally surrendered to His Will. It wasn't like I didn't want to do His Will; no not at all. I have been praying for His Will since the first days of my ordeal, and I confessed it, asked for it, agreed to it, etc. The big difference was in resting in it. I wasn't resting in His Will. I was still think that His Will was something to be grasped at, something to lay hold of, when in reality it was already working and functioning in my life. I was thinking His Will was to be done, to be accomplished, and trying so hard to do that on my own. I wasn't letting Him accomplish it through me (which I how He prefers to do it). I was trying with my own hand, all the while saying to Him: "Yes, Lord, I trust you." LOL!
Last week, I finally surrendered and admitted that while I wanted His Will, I simply wasn't willing to let it come to pass. I agreed with it on principal, and even really liked it. I just was holding it back, keeping Him from doing what He needed to do. I know, you may be saying: "How can you keep God from doing anything?" Yes, I know; but it is a cold-hard fact that often we thwart the precious plans of our Lord, simply by "doing things ourselves" or by not listening and heeding His Spirit. The Lord will wait for us to let go, and then He will move. It is simply a matter of His Glory. The Word says that God will not share His Glory with anyone. If something is His Will, He will do it. You may participate (aren't we so blessed to be a participant in the Lord's Will for us?), but He will do it and receive all the Glory for it.
We get ourselves stuck (and sometimes in trouble) when we try and help Him out. He doesn't need our help, He just needs us to be willing to let His Spirit do the moving, changing, and remodeling. I like to think of it like a contractor who is hired to do a job on your home. He knows how to do the work, and even if you consider yourself a handy person, more than likely he will want to do the work himself. It is an integrity thing, an issue of pride (self-sufficiency) and also a demonstration of ability. That contractor is not going to want you helping him out. He will want to take responsibility for the work, his performance, and the outcome. It is from beginning to end, one job, one purpose, one focus which will equal one successful result.
God is just the same way. He is more than able to handle any work on His own. He doesn't need you or me to help Him out. The neat thing is that often He lets us work with Him (just like a Dad might do with His little boy or girl). He often allows us to help him out, so long as we remember who is the Contractor, and who is the helper person.
I sort of got the two people mixed up. I wanted God as the Contractor of my life; but I also wanted to make some changes, call some of the shots, and interject some of my own ideas into His plans and purposes for me. Makes sense -- after all it is my life, right? Well, not if I have surrendered my life at the foot of the cross. If I have laid my life aside, taken up my cross, and followed after Him; then my life is no longer my own, but I belong to Him. In doing so, I relinquish my rights and choices and wants and needs, and rest in the provision of a loving Savior. When I pick up my rights, etc., and start looking at things my way, I am in essence, walking away from the Cross of Christ, and trying to go my own way again. Even the littlest movement away from Him can cause upset and discomfort. We are meant to be followers to His Lead. We were not meant to lead our own lives and hope that He will follow us.
Therefore, making a long story short, this is what I have done:
- Committed myself to being a follower
- Renewed my pledge of faith to listen AND heed the Holy Spirit
- Relaxed and allowed His Grace to flow over me, through me, and all around me
- Let go of my desires to do things my way
- And lastly, decided that His way was best (and every element of His way)
This works out in my life like this:
- Graduate school -- sending my last papers into to Mercy College.
- Not moving anywhere UNTIL the Lord moves me
- Accepting the path that will lead me into teaching English Composition
- Looking at other PhD programs that are online, considering them as possibles (in time)
- Settling that my son will be home schooled next year (yes!)
- Knowing that God has a good plan for my son, college and everything is all set
- Steadily focusing on the needs here at home (home repairs, etc.)
- Taking care of business (financial, house, and long-term goals)
- Believing that this is His Will and accepting it as being the BEST path for me
There are some big unknowns still lurking in my life, but there is nothing I can do about them. My DH and I are at an impasse right now. I don't know what will come, so for now, I am simply trying to be compassionate and kind. I am trying to keep my home happy, and make the most of this difficult situation. I am trusting the Lord to either: reconcile us or to separate us. I am not doing anything, one way or another (hands off), and leaving the outcome completely to His Grace and Glory. I am simply doing the things He is telling me to do, and letting Him work with and on my DH. In turn, He is working on me as well.
That is it for now. I am waiting for my friend, Karen, to come and pick me up so we can go chat over coffee and bagels. She has been unable to meet the past couple weeks, so it will be really nice to catch up.
I am Praising God today for His Faithful work in my life. How I thank Him, and how I give Him Praise. He is so Faithful to me, and He is SO GOOD!