Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Changes

I've thought a million times about how to start this blog post. When I first put it into a draft it was going to be about moving and how excited I was about that new phase of life, some of you might have seen that initial phase of the thought of a moving post on Saturday #bloggeroops, as time went on it was going to be about not moving and how hard that decision was, and now it's about both how God brought me through both of those things and brought forth changes. Changes the Lord allowed, but changes that will be hard nonetheless.


Let's go back to where I originally wanted this post to go. Moving. You see back in May Kevin and I pretty reluctantly re-signed a lease for another year at our little place. We couldn't find anything else in the moment and just settled for staying and even was happy with that decision for a little while. When we found this place and then got the keys, we were completely thrilled. I wanted a town home, check...Kevin wanted to use DISH, check... I wanted the kitchen to be somewhat open to the living room, check...we both wanted to get a dog but not pay a monthly payment for one, check...and we both wanted to be on the West side of Norman, check! All of our must-haves were solid here. It was small, as it is now, but it worked for us. We didn't need a second bedroom, still don't really, and we didn't mind that we didn't have a closed off bedroom. So what's the problem? Storage. Oh, if I could just get one more closet, we only have one! Or a shed for that matter, somewhere to put the outdoor things. There just isn't a place for everything to go, there's stuff under our bed, sofas, clothes in our one closet, on the sides of the laundry stack and sofas...it's been driving me crazy. Plus now we have Paisley, so of course a yard, even a tiny one, of some size would be awesome.

So then in July I randomly checked a rental property website and found what I thought would be a perfect place for us. It didn't break our budget, it wasn't any farther from work than where we are. All of our must haves were pretty much met. But the door closed once, then a second time, and then a third time (there was a whole neighborhood of these duplexes). I decided the three "no's" was just God leading us to move somewhere else and I was confident in this, or at least I allowed my emotions to convince me of such. I mean, I cried about it yall. I wanted out so badly, I came to tears and I begged Kevin to consider. Did he have peace about moving? Nope. Did I have peace about moving? Nope. Even after going to see the place I thought was basically "perfect," I didn't have the, oh my goodness this is it, this is the place for us, I have peace about it. But I pushed. I pushed and I pushed and I pushed until I couldn't find anything more to look into. Want to know what happened? God shut every, single, stinkin' door.

In his heart, a man plans his course but the LORD determines his steps. - Proverbs 16: 9

Yep. I wrestled hard with it. I wrestled through it with God, and Kevin for that matter. And I was just plain frustrated. I worked so hard to find us somewhere! Why, why God? I just didn't understand and I had, had my heart set on moving. The fact that we were not going to took a while for me to accept. It hurt.


There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the Lord. -Proverbs 23: 30

Sometimes, no wait, ALL the time God knows better. And He's leading us to a better place, even when we feel like where we are is caving in around us, He's there and He knows your pains and your hurts but He's got a plan even when you can't see it. 

'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'-Jeremiah 29:11

It's so easy to fall into our plans. It's so easy to be just think, well this is how I feel so it must be what we're going to do, where we're going to go. There's two things that come to my mind through this process
Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of wisdom. -Proverbs 23:18

One, when Kevin and I were still in school, ah the saying of 'when I was in college' still hasn't gotten old, we attended a spring break trip with the BSU and had several speakers come who taught on various things. The one message that I can remember ever so clearly, from the 15 or so we heard, was one in which a couple taught about how over the years God had led them. Never, ever, did they have a change in their life that came about when only ONE of them felt peace about it, no. God spoke to both of them separately about their futures and always gave them the same answer. My situation, our situation, was really no different, I knew I could not feel peace in the decision to not move but I wanted so badly for peace to come with a decision to move. I have to remember, when a change comes, God is going to speak to us both clearly about it, and BOTH of us MUST listen.

 Above all else guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. -Proverbs 4:23

The second thought, as we went through this time, my church and my devo taught on not going through life based on emotions, in other words: don't let your emotions drive your actions. Now that's not just circumstance, that's God speaking through other individuals to me as I'm running clear in the opposite direction, think Jonah and the whale...Jonah knew the answer, Jonah knew where He would find peace but he ran, and he ran so far that he ended up in the mouth of a whale, that of all things brought him and directed him right to where God had told him. Basically that is my story on this situation, only I'm so very glad I didn't end up in the mouth of a whale or big fish, whatever interpretation you take. 

We have to put our emotions at the feet of Christ, He will minister to them and He will care for them and He will lead us past them! Check out Isaiah 55:8-9-  'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways' declares the Lord 'as the heavens are higher than the earth so are my ways higher than yours and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.' What can we say to that, other than WOW! The God of the universe, of course  knows the best, better way. Also too, how encouraging is it to read that? Maybe you didn't catch the encouragement in it the first time, read it again, go ahead. You see God didn't say those things to us in a you-are-so-lowly-human-how-dare-you-think-you're-better....no God says this in love! Your ways are not His ways! Sing Hallelujah! How many times have you done things "your" way, only to find out if you'd just let that friend try and help or follow God's leading it would have been better/easier/etc...? We can have encouragement in knowing that God doesn't have the same plans as us, His are better! We don't have to come up with the plan ourselves, carry burdens ourselves, etc. We can have encouragement in knowing His thoughts are not ours, no He's not freaking out like we are. He has it all taken care of, He has it wrapped up, He has it sorted out, HE HAS IT! A pastor from our church used to repeat to us, God sees you-God loves you-God has you. Mmmm is there good peace in that statement!

Be persistent in trusting even when you don't feel like it- Pastor Clark Mitchell


And so now that brings us to the present. God didn't lead us to move, and thankfully we both listened before we got in over our heads. He still gave us a small blessing, though, He gave us some extra margin in our budget and with that I bought new pillows for our sofa, which helped this place just feel a little better, it's the little things yall!. And, there was a reason why God didn't have us move, a reason that we are just now understanding and learning. A reason that hurts and will be a big change in our lives but a reason that shows how God takes care of us and prepares a path for us. Because, that is exactly the truth. In absolutely everything I've gone through in my twenty-three years of life, God has brought me through it and into a better place. Never, ever, ever has He left me stranded. Never has He left me in a destitute place. He's always carried me through, always brought me to "greener pastures."

You have exactly what you need for the next step. God has prepared you- Pastor Mac Richard

We are called to walk in joy, honesty, and faith. We are called to be different and stand apart. To show joy when it's hard to be joyful, to be honest in our daily actions and interactions with people, and to be faithful- faithful to what the Lord is leading us to, and faithful to the relationships He's blessed us with. Judges 6:25-27,  teaches on a moment in time where Gideon was called by the Lord to do something BIG, something that was going to cause people to notice him, and maybe not in a way he wanted. He was scared, it says that clearly in the scripture. But he walked in faith, and honesty and came to joy through it. So too as I go through these changes, these moments in which God is leading though I might be scared to go through... so too I should trust the Lord, walk faithfully and joyfully and honestly through.

Commit to the Lord whatever you do and your plans will succeed. -Proverbs 16:3

Whoever gives heed to instruction prospers, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord. -Proverbs 16:20

If God is for us, who can EVER be against us? -Romans 8:31



I know I hate those vague blog post people write too, the ones that talk about change but don't say what change...or talk about big news but don't say what news...or hint at something coming but don't say what's coming...I know they're awful because of course it's just going to make us all curious or concerned. I'm sorry to be that blogger today, but I'll make things clearer over time, I promise.


Whew! That was a lot, a lot to write and goodness knows a lot for yall to read, thanks to those who did! I guess it's pretty obvious I've been resting in Proverbs lately. Have any of you ever gone through a season of frustration and fighting against where God was leading only to see Him bring you to a better place? I want to hear stories!

One thing to leave you with, a song that at first drove me crazy (songs with repeat words tend to do that to me) but as I heard it the other day after driving home from work I felt the words really hit home. Listen to the words my friends, " We can trust our God, He knows what He's doing, though it might hurt now...it might seem there's an ocean in between but He's holding onto you and me and He's never going to leave, He is with us, ALWAYS...."

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10 comments:

  1. The vagueness is making me speculate. uh oh!

    And I so understand. Never did I think We would be in this one BR apartment so long. This will be our fourth year and it's sad. But to think if we bought a house and now I've just lost my job. Yikes!

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  2. Ooh, vague posts always get me guessing ;)
    It's such a hard thing, wanting to want something, but knowing that we shouldn't... but the verses you quote are so relevant - God knows best, and when we look back we can usually see that. Well done for being so faithful in this!

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  3. Oh no, vague rumors of change?? We're all so curious over here. :P That's awesome that God is using this season to remind you of His good plans for you and His ultimate knowledge of what is best. That's a lessons we all need to learn a few times in life, I think!

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  4. We have a lot of life changes going on in our lives too right now! :) Love the pictures!

    xo

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  5. I cannot wait to find out what this is all about...
    It's amazing how the plan always unfolds as it should, we just need to trust Him

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  6. God is so amazing! My hubby and I have been struggling with change too, or our 'want' for change, but as always, GOD knows best! Love this post :-)

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  7. Praying for you girl.. For everything there is a season :)

    I'm def in the same boat in a way. I know God has a plan for us when we move next year.. But it's financially frustrating. But God has a plan of hope and a future for His children. :) Love ya!

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  8. Great post, so glad that you are putting your trust in God for his plan! We are still in an apartment too, and I really want a house, but I know in God's time, he will show us where he wants us to be! Sending prayers your way!

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  9. Saying prayers for you and your hubby. And just remember, I am just down the road and a text away so let me know if I can help in any way!

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  10. Prayers for you guys! Just remember that the hard change often leads us to God's better plans in the future. :)

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