Recently someone asked me what stood out the most to me during my schooling. The question caught me off guard and I took my time answering. It was a great question. I finally answered her back; the journey. There are some particular classes, and professors that stand and had quite an influence on me, but overall the greatest thing about school has been the journey itself. God has taught me more then I can recall over my six years of school. There have many laughs, tears, heartaches, struggles, and many memories made that will forever have a lasting impact my life. It amazes me how God used those years of schooling to shape me into the person I am today.
The downside to graduating is now everyone asks what I plan on doing now. You see, most everyone who knows me thinks that I went to school to be something, that I went having this big career plan in mind. The truth is I didn't. When I started my college career as a mere freshman I had big plans. It only took a year and a half, plus a few bad grades in math and science for me to realize that this whole career thing was not my thing. God slowly began to weave new desires, new dreams into my life. I changed schools, changed degrees because He told me too. Thus began a new way of life for me. One that centered around HIM and not around ME.
I did have plans after college, then He told me to go to grad school. I thought it sounded crazy... what would I do with that. I see now that it wasn't the degree that mattered... it was the lessons that I would learn while getting the degree that mattered.
And now here I am... degree done.... and no word from Him on what to do next. When I am asked what I plan I doing now I used to stumble with my words.. mumble something about teaching, or going back to school, now I just smile and tell them that I am waiting on His instructions.
If your one of those people who I have said that to... you might think I'm crazy.. or that I'm I sound way to religious. Frankly I'm beyond caring what you think or how you label me. I'm done trying to explain how I know that God is talking to me. I'm done trying to convince people that I'm not using God has an excuse to not get a "real job." What I do with my life has nothing to do with you... it really has nothing to do with me. It's all about Him.
Take a second and really think about that statement. It's not an easy statement to let come out of your mouth. This place that I am at is easily one of the most uncomfortable places and it is also at times quite scary. Letting God direct every step is hard for someone who likes to have control... who struggles to trust... who constantly fights my own fleshly desires.
It makes it even more difficult when people I trust and respect question the path I am taking. As if I have control over what He tells me. Honestly, their questioning makes me mad... it makes me doubt... and sometimes it makes me question whether it is the right path.
These people want the best for me. They wish to see me succeed. I know that their intentions are good. I read this quote this morning from Philip Yancy's book Soul Survivor:
Their parents nagged them about getting a real job and making something of themselves. One of them responded to his mother's concerned prayers over him: "I wonder what Jesus said, listening to her prayers! I felt like writing her back and asking her if Jesus ever held a 'regular job' - or ever 'found Himself.' Jesus, the migrant preacher, who became sop unpopular and disturbing to everyone big and important that He got crucified."
I know that He has great plans for my life... they just might not look like what you... what I had in mind. I do know that His plans are to prosper me, not to harm me, and He will give me hope and a future. But remember this:
His definition of prosper and my definition of prosper are not the same.
His definition of hope and a future is different then your definition of hope and a future.
Just because the place I am at looks different then I expected it to doesn't mean that He has forgotten about me... although I'll admit that it sometimes feels as if He has. I know that is just one of the lies the enemy wants me to believe. He does not leave weary. He reminds me....
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us. Romans 5:1-5
He will not disappoint me.
He will never forsake me.
He will always provide me with grace to stand upon.