Do you know what I love to have in place?
Do you know what God often throws out of the way so He can lead us to our calling?
How rude of Him, right? I know this struggle first hand. From the time I was 14 years old in middle school to the last day of DTS, when I was 21, my only concern was figuring out what would come next. The stack of failed college plans, other DTS plans, or even art school plans was endless. In my mind, I had to know what my life would look like, but every plan somehow got derailed either by fear or poor timing. When I came to LA I was on a waitlist for nursing school, which is what I thought I wanted to do for years. I worked hard to make it happen and I was excited to grow my relationship with God during DTS and then jump into university life afterwards. I had it all figured out. A financial plan, check. Job security, check. Community, check. I went forward with this plan until the day I got accepted into the program.
Three years of waiting for this plan to come alive, and when it was actually time for me to say yes and accept my spot in university, God asked me to say yes to Him instead. Our plans did not align with each other and my heart broke. For so long I thought that my plan was God’s plan, but I realized shortly after this moment, that I had never included God in this dream. I never asked Him to be a part of the planning process. So when the time came for me to say yes to my dream He asked me to instead follow His dream for my life. I turned down my spot in nursing school and instead decided to trust that what God has for me is better than anything I could come up with on my own. Proverbs 3:5-6 says:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding;
in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight.
This is a classic passage that I have grown up hearing and thought I understood fully. But it wasn’t until I had to surrender my plans and my fear of the future to God, where I actually knew what it meant. To fully trust somebody with my life was one of the most vulnerable processes I’ve had to work through in my entire life. Do not rely on your own understanding. “But God, my understanding is all I have!” I had clung so tightly onto this control that I didn’t even realize God wasn’t a part of it. In my mind, my understanding was pretty clear: go to school so I can get a job and be able to provide for myself and one day my family. In reality, this does not seem like that crazy of an idea, it makes sense, to the world it really makes sense. But I went through this process with God of having to give up my own ideas and understanding because what He has for me is not of this world. It left me feeling naked and vulnerable but so much lighter than I’ve ever felt before. This was not a quick battle for me because I am occasionally a stubborn person… It was months of going back and forth with God. One moment I was saying yes to YWAM and the beginning of the dreams God kept calling me to. Then the next moment, when life got too difficult to handle on my own I fell back into that place of control and my own plans because I still hadn’t fully surrendered them to God. I still hadn’t learned to fully trust Him yet.
Want to know why? Because I did not fully know Him.
You can’t trust someone you don’t know right? Right. So why would this be any different with God? God can be a lot more simple with His heart for us than we often think. In the passage above it says in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight. When we start to get to know who God is and build that intimate relationship with Him, our life actually starts to fall into place without us even realizing it. When I started to put the work in and pursue my relationship with God it got easier and easier for me to let go of that control and start to trust Him. Start simple in beginning to discover who He is by setting time aside to just be with Him like you would spend time with a friend. Go on a walk with God, ask what He likes, ask what He dislikes, one of my favourite things to do is to ask Him what makes Him laugh, His answer may surprise you. As your relationship continues to grow, don’t stop, dive deeper into His word and keep uncovering who He is and you will start to witness your own trust strengthen in your heart. God desires to dream with you and share His purpose for you, but even more so He desires to know you and be known by you, then the rest will follow. So ask God how you can start to get to know Him better, does it start by saying yes to something that scares you? If it does, I believe you are already on the right track.