June 23, 2014

Keep Calm and Carry On

Psalm 46:10 is one of my favorite verses. No matter how many times I read this psalm, I find comfort in these words:

Be still and know that I am God.

I struggle with being still, with ceasing to strive or remain in control. I want to be assured that everything will work out, and the only way that I can know for certain is IF I control all the details of my life. I know of course that I am not the best person to be in control of my life. I have learned that lesson well -- to know that God is far better able to watch over me and care for me -- than I can. Yet, I refuse to be still, to let go, and to let God take control.

This past Sunday, our Associate Pastor gave his last sermon at our church. It was a bittersweet moment for me, sad in that he is leaving under a cloud of circumstance (crisis), but happy that he and his family have a new calling to pursue. His message was entitled, "Keep calm and carry on." The message title referenced the WWII poster created by the British government to encourage citizens in case of an invasion of the island.

Our pastor used it as a metaphor for the current crisis at our church. His point was that God has us well covered and although he and his family are leaving the church to take a new pastorate in Seattle, he wanted us to know that God had a plan for our church.

While I thought the irony was a bit much -- truthfully -- I am still stinging a bit from the fact that all of our teaching Pastors have resigned -- I did get his point. I mean, I believe that God does have a good plan for Paradise Church. I am confident that He will bring the best person to fill the interim Pastor position and that this church will not close its doors anytime soon.

As I thought about this message I was reminded of the fact that I too need to remain calm despite all the turmoil and unknown in my life. I am, after all, trying to complete doctoral study and work full-time. I am trying to manage my finances, living on very little (no income this summer), and waiting for promised reward this fall. I am trusting the Lord to provide everything I need, and at times, I lose my patience and become frustrated over what seems like unending "waiting."

I am also waiting for my divorce to be finalized, and while I am not anxious for it to be over, there is part of me that sees closure as a good thing. I have been waiting for closure for five years, and now that I finally made up my mind to end my marriage legally (instead of continuing to wait for my husband to do it since he was the one who left), there is this feeling of "getting on with it." Yes, I am impatient at this moment and I feel at times that until that door is finally closed, I am still sitting in limbo land -- unable to be single, yet no longer married.

The blessing of it all is that God is faithful to me right where I am today. As Joyce Meyer often says "thank God I am not where I used to be." The idea being that while I may not be where I want or hope to be, at the least, I am not where I used to be. Yes, God has faithfully provided a way for me to live my life as a new single person. He has given me greater education, freedom to change careers and become a professor, and a new life driven by His purpose for me. In all, He has made a new way for me, and I am blessed, so very blessed.

Today, I am choosing to be patient. I am choosing to be still and to wait for the Lord's provision of every good thing He has in mind for me. I will wait, I will let go, and I will let God run my life as He determines best. He will move me to the place of His choosing. He will prepare me for ministry to do His work. He will provide every thing I need -- food, shelter, clothing, jobs. He will do everything in His way and in His time. I will wait upon the Lord, and I will look up and Let God be God over every detail of my life.

Yes, I will wait, Lord. I will patiently wait for you this good day.

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