Don’t Take My Word for It
Summer time can be a challenging time in life as it is often a time of transition. Whether you find yourself entering or leaving school, moving, or anything else, we can find this season of limbo to be challenging to navigate, making the decisions we make throughout this time heavy and often a little frightening. Finding the will of God is a point of wrestling for many of us as we make our way through life.
We consider it to be this process of finding the one right answer that will make everything else in life make sense. This causes us to nervously wrestle with decisions and stress over seasons when we lack understanding or clarity. If you are anything like me, these times caused me to live in fear of making the wrong choices and somehow messing up my future beyond repair.
Too often we forget the nature of God as we consider how His will is to play out in our individual lives. We struggle to know when to move forward, when to let go, when to wait. We struggle to find peace in our uncertainty, in sickness, or in loss. Much of this is because we’ve allowed ourselves to build our perspective of Him around the concepts we learn from life with humans versus the examples we find in Scripture.
As we begin our summer, I’m here to remind you of some things you should consider regarding your own life.
He has a reason for every season of your life.
“When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, ‘If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.’ So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea” (Exodus 13:17-18, NLT).
The Lord opened the doors and brought freedom to His people, yet they still had a wilderness to get through. In this season of freedom they faced a lot of challenges, some of their own doing and some that were meant to teach them how to be the people of God. Israel didn’t walk out of Egypt knowing exactly where they would be two months down the road, but God set up a path for them, a path that protected them from immediate failure, a path that brought peace. Sometimes a God plan is nonsensical to our human minds, but peace will come when you trust Him enough to walk through the parted walls of water.
He will speak, but sometimes He just moves.
“The Lord went ahead of them. He guided them during the day with a pillar of cloud, and he provided light at night with a pillar of fire. This allowed them to travel by day or by night. And the Lord did not remove the pillar of cloud or pillar of fire from its place in front of the people” (Exodus 13:21-22, NLT).
The Lord went ahead of them, and just like He did that for His people then, He does that for us now. If our God never changes, then His commitment to guide our steps won’t change. He may not open the heavens with a booming voice and direct you to your future spouse or career, but if we are familiar enough with His presence, we will feel Him pulling us to move. In the Old Testament, it was a pillar of cloud or fire, but today we have His Spirit in us. Learn to be sensitive to Him. Stay where He has planted you until He moves once more.
He honors faithfulness.
Exodus 32:9-14 is a set of verses of a story you probably know well. The people of Israel have rebelled and made their own god out of a golden calf, and the Lord was ready to wipe them off the face of the earth. Yet, Moses pleaded with the Lord for the sake of the people, and because of Moses and his faithfulness to the Lord, they were given a second chance.
Moses, a faithful man, dedicated his whole life to serving God and leading a stubborn people. Because of his prayers and his pleading, the Lord spared the people from complete destruction. Moses cared more about the people of that nation than was ever expected of him, so he fought with them and for them and he built his life around doing the work God called him to do.
You cannot go wrong with a faithful spirit. You will never regret time in the Lord’s presence.
He is a God of restoration.
“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. My eyes will be open and my ears attentive to every prayer made in this place” (II Chronicles 7:14-15, NLT).
The Lord gives Solomon the way of reconciliation for a people with flaws. He knows we will make mistakes, He knows we will struggle, but He gives us this charge to offer us a way back into His arms. When you struggle, when you fail, when you find it hard to move beyond the moment you are in, remember we serve a God who hears and restores us. There is nothing too big or too far that could keep us from Him if only we are willing to humble ourselves, pray, and turn away from our sin.
Transition is scary, but we serve a God of consistency, one who has remained the same since the beginning of time. When you are seeking direction or you are faced with a situation that seems challenging, search the Scriptures. John chapter one tells us that in the beginning was the Word and the Word was God. You have a priceless resource, a guide by which to live your life. Open it and find your direction.
Olivia Dummer is a student in Blue Springs, Missouri where Jason Huckaby is her pastor. She writes and keeps an inspirational blog hoping to encourage others and share what she’s learned about God.