The other day while I was working, I thought of this post I wanted to write out, but did not have the time to sit down and write it, and now I have forgotten all I wanted to say. It has been a tough week emotionally, spiritually, physically, and mentally. I have been stretched, challenged, blessed, and even felt despair. Thoughts of packing up and heading back to Indiana actually crossed my mind at one point. Then I realized a couple things: 1) Even if I go back there, I really have no place to go and no work prospects; 2) Things are truly not as bad as they appear or feel right now.
In the last week I have had two cars give up the ghost. My Bonneville’s transmission dropped, and the Cavalier I bought blew a head gasket exactly a week later. Thankfully I was able to scrap both cars and make a little money off them, but that is trivial when you start thinking about the chain effect of not having a car. Most people could get a ride, take a bus, or ride a bike. Not so in my case since I work an hour and a half north of Denver, then thoroughly enjoy my two-plus hour drive back in evening traffic. No public transportation or anyone I know is really headed that way every day. This time I really freaked out, and to be completely honest, I am still having a hard time trusting God with this situation. I was very blessed to be loaned a car Thursday and Friday, but it is Saturday, and work roles back around on Monday. I do have an option or two, but they require stepping out of my comfort zone in a very specific way. This way is something I do not do easily, and I have wrestled with it.
Even though I cannot wrap my mind around it, in my heart I truly believe God will show up. Again, it is the same old story of surrender and trust that I have written/talked about so many times, but this time around it is coming much, much slower.
That brings me to another issue I am wrestling with: my job. I have a great job. It is actually probably by far the best job I have even had, materially speaking. I knew, going into it, it was not meant to be long term. I struggled with God on even taking the job, because it did not seem to fit the picture I thought was being painted as I came out to Colorado. I thought I was coming here to get a job in ministry? Instead, I think God has wanted to do two things by putting me in this job: 1) give me a good financial springboard to get established and settled; 2) show me how truly weak I am without Him. The second point is by far the most important. I wake up at 4:45am every day. I am groggy, grumpy, and sore daily. I can barely even function that early, and if I miss my morning coffee, well I most likely will have a horrible day. Actually, I feel more sorry for the rest of the world if I miss my morning coffee. *laughs* My long days have not only taken a toll on me, but also on my relationship with God and the vision I have been given. My time with God has become less and less. I do have a lot of time to pray while I drive, but honestly I am so tired I can barely think! I have learned very quickly in the last couple weeks that I am severely unhappy with myself and my life when I am not in fellowship daily with Christ. That is not a feel good kind of idea, it is a solid fact. I hate it, and I get so frustrated with myself over it. I have seen my stress level rise to an all time high that I have not seen in a long time. You get the idea I think.
Three hours from now I have an interview for a job I would love to have, and a job that would free up a lot of time for me. I am excited and very nervous. It would be another great job, and I think that from a human standpoint I have a great chance at getting it. It is a position to implement and manage online sales for a bicycle shop. To do this would look fantastic on my resume! This is similar to what I was doing in Indy, but on a much more impressive level. It would be an awesome opportunity. Now, from my personal perspective, all that is great, but not what I am really looking at first. What I see when I look at this job, is more time to focus on the essentials in my life, specifically youth group ministry and my personal relationship with God. I miss the intimacy with Christ that I had when I first got out here. I am not saying it is not there, it is just not as prominent.
Ultimately, I have been learning a lot about myself, where my weaknesses are, where my strengths lie, and seeing where exactly God really wants me to be. Here is the thing, I want God to reign with full control in my life. That desire has never changed, but the discouragement of having to come back to the reality so often is frustrating to me.
A friend of mine picked me up when I car blew up last Wednesday. K-Love was on and this song was the next song that played. I was so angry, asking God why the heck all this was happening and screaming in my soul for some direction and assurance. These lyrics grabbed me from the following song by Hillsong United: So I’ll stand, with arms wide and heart abandoned, in awe of the one who gave it all, I’ll stand my soul Lord to you surrendered… I am honestly not sure if I can express to you exactly the extent at which those words hit me. It was like God telling me to go back to the basics, again, and trust Him. It was a gentle reminder, not a slap upside the head. There is a time and a place for sternness, and God knew that sternness at this point would not help me at all. He knew how overwhelmed and defeated I felt, and was very loving. Looking back now I see that and am very appreciative.
What now? Well, I am praying that God shows up huge this weekend. Not necessarily in a physical sense, but a spiritual sense. Yes I have some real needs and opportunities I need Him to take control of, and I am excited to see how He will do that, but I need Him to show up for me in a way only He can and rejuvenate my very hungry soul. There is a fire in me that needs to be poked and stirred.