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Posts Tagged ‘a willing vessel’

 

I have been in Georgia for almost 6 weeks now. Things have not gone according to MY plan! I planned on coming down here and immediately getting plugged in to a non profit ministry for single moms. I had this set up before I moved here. When I got here, the organization only needed volunteers in the thrift store. I did volunteer in the thrift store a few hours, but then had to seek God’s guidance and re-evaluate. I wanted to work with single moms. That was my heart and so I let this go.

Before I moved down here, I had planned on being involved with an emergency shelter for women. It was a mix of women from different backgrounds, not just single moms and that was fine with me. I have a heart to see ALL women made whole through Christ. I was actually offered a job as an assistant house manager. I was given a sample schedule to give me an idea of the hours I would be working. When I started to calculate the hours, I started to panic a little. Every other week from Monday to Monday, I would work 108 hours; 4 over night shifts from 5 pm to 8 am and then the weekend from 8 am Saturday morning to 8 am Monday morning. The pay period was a total of 123 hours, ALL at minimum wage (7 something an hour). Over time was not given. After talking to my 3 daughters, who all said that they would not do it, I declined the offer.

At that point, I was discouraged. Okay God, what now?

I found another single mom ministry in the other direction and tried there. This ministry has monthly meetings for single parents, so I contacted the executive director and offered my help. I received one short reply and then nothing. I messaged a couple of days before the event, again offering my help and asking when I needed to arrive. I know that she saw my message the same day, but I did not receive a reply declining my offer of help until 2 hours before the event.

In the meantime, I have been filling out applications for every job possible and getting nowhere. Not even an interview.

Okay God, what’s the plan?

I had found a program for certification for Biblical lay counselors back in January. I had pursued a degree in Psychology at one time, but really wanted to become a Biblical counselor. When I found this program, I prayed and prayed and decided that if this program was in God’s will that He would provide the funds for the program. I told God that I would know it was His will if He provided the exact amount I needed for the program. I never told anyone. It was between me and God. I waited and prayed. Right before my birthday (which is June 8th) I received the exact amount of the program in cash. I am now pursuing a certification for Biblical lay counseling. I know this is God’s will, but what am I going to do with it?

In my daily devotional time, I was crying out to God for an answer. Eventually, my money will be gone and what then? I felt this whisper in my spirit, “get connected to a church.” I had visited one church and didn’t feel like it was the one for us. We visited another church this past Sunday and I am going to give it a chance. I am going to connect there and see where God leads.

So, I am digging into God’s Word and growing in my relationship with Him. I am the kind of person that needs to see the big picture. I need to see 10 steps down the road so I can prepare for what is to come. God doesn’t work like that. He gives us one step at a time and then tells us to wait for the next step to be revealed. Maybe, my plan to serve single moms is not God’s plan for me. Maybe, I am to counsel women from ALL walks of life who are hurting and have been broken by the chaos in this world. God knows that I am more than just a single mom. I have had enough painful life experiences that I have a true compassion for ALL women who are suffering. If this is the plan, I am okay with that. I just wish God would give me a clue!

I have to admit that my biggest worry is money. But, I hang on to faith and trust in a God who provided the funds for my counseling program and who has never once failed me in any way. It is a stretching of my faith. I pray. I dig into the Word of God. I work on my counseling program. I grow in my relationship with God and I wait (somewhat patiently) for God to reveal the next step. It is making me completely vulnerable and dependent on Him. It has thrown me out of my comfort zone and pushed me to surrender ALL of MY plans. I am empty of myself. I am completely and wholly at God’s mercy. I am a vessel totally surrendered to Him and ready to be used. He has brought me to a place of complete and total dependence on Him. Isn’t that where He wants us to be?

I will continue to update as my journey in Georgia continues. I have to say that I love it here. I already feel that it is home.

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waiting for the Lord

 

Exodus 14:13-14

13 Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. 14 The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”

Psalms 46:10

10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations,  I will be exalted in the earth.”

Psalm 37:7

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.

I have always had this tendency to head for the hills as soon as life gets tough. I have always had a hard time with staying put and trusting God to work things out. I have always had a hard time trusting that God would fight for me. I try to control my own destiny when I think things aren’t going the way I think they should. Needless to say, my attempts to control my destiny usually end in disaster. It would be so much easier if I would just listen to God and obey His will for my life. Life gets messy. Sometimes we are surrounded by chaos and despair. Sometimes we are oppressed by our circumstances. That is life in a fallen world. How do we fight that urge to run when life gets tough?

  1. Pray– Pray that God will reveal what it is He wants you to do in your situation. Pray for patience and courage. Pray for deliverance. Prayer keeps us connected to God’s heart, which is essential when we are dealing with a difficult situation. Pour out your heart to God on a daily basis. Our heavenly Father is listening and He cares about what you are going through.
  2. Serve– Find a way to serve in your community while you wait for God to act. Serving in any capacity is a way to minister to someone else who may be dealing with their own difficulties. Instead of wallowing in our troubles, helping to alleviate the stress in someone else’s life will often bring us hope in our own lives.
  3. Community– Build a support system. Find other people who are going through a similar situation. Often times, simply knowing that we aren’t alone in our circumstances gives us comfort.
  4. Grow– Many times, God keeps us in the fire to teach us something we need to learn in order to move on in His will. Take this time to figure out what it is that God wants you to learn. Make the choice to grow despite the trials of life.

I know first hand how hard it is to sit and wait for God to act. We want things done NOW! Waiting for God can be painful. Trusting Him can be hard. Surrendering my life to Him has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. I still struggle to control circumstances in my life. I still find myself looking for greener pastures. I am learning to grow in my own messy circumstances. I am learning to serve from my own chaos. I am learning to find community in the midst of my despair. I am learning to pray and trust God to work in my life as He sees fit. I am learning to be still and let God fight for me. As I grow from my circumstances, I will keep you updated here. Through my mess, I am determined to become a willing vessel that God can use, right where I am.

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