“We are not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be.” – CS Lewis.
This struck a chord with me today. I spend so much time relying on God, taking every little infliction and placing as much of a positive spin on it as possible. Sometimes, I struggle through the school day, just about clinging to the thought of Gods master plan that I can’t quite grasp yet. I torture myself with the need to know why things happen at the exact moment they do. I find it difficult to live in the moment because while I’m aware I’ll experience immense blessings in this life with God, I’ll also endure fierce hardships. It makes me so anxious sometimes because I know that for every good thing God provides, he’ll also test me. Relentlessly, in a loving, fatherly way but when I can’t get past all the hurt I may face in the future, for a moment, that doesn’t seem like much of a consolation.
I’ve realised that my fear of what’s to come in this life with God isn’t really about trusting his perfect plan. It’s more that I know the cost at which this plan must unfold. I know there will be many sacrifices, heartache and pain.
I rarely feel scared about what God will do in my life. I trust that he’s bringing me to places I need to be, people i need to meet and allowing me to experience things that will better me as a person. It’s the journey that I tend to obsess over and analyse. I’m assured that everything will be done for Gods glory and that nothing will leave me feeling worse off.
I want my walk with God to be joyful and unhindered by the harsh realities of life. Negative thoughts tend to infiltrate my mind when I’m going through periods of stress, like exams. I’ve been thinking of this quote all day and I’m thankful that Gods showing me parts of myself that I can work on and progress with. As I write this, I’m in a pretty bad mood. In fact, I’m in a pretty foul mood! Exams are on the horizon and I’ve too much on my mind to focus properly.
Within an hour, I know I’ll be fine again. I’ll talk to God; he’ll tell me its okay and quieten my anxious heart. He’ll remind me that I’m living a life that’s been mapped out with immense grace and precision timing. I’ll sit over my bible and read something that stirs that familiar fire in my heart again and I’ll remember that I’m truly happy, even in times of sadness. I’ll step away from Gods throne feeling renewed and ready to fight, ready to submit, ready to learn. This will stay with me until my next downhearted day, and the process will repeat. And that’s not a bad thing. That’s exactly why we need God.
This life consists of constant flying, soaring, falling, crashing, and then mustering up the courage to get right back up and face whatever knocked us down. I don’t think I could do that over and over without a little faith.
I haven’t blogged in a while because I’ve pretty much been in hiding! It sounds like I’ve fallen away from God but I couldn’t have fallen more in love with him and just at the right time! I took a break to seek him, to spend time with him and just be with him. I’ve been struggling with all sorts of weird emotions this last while. I’ve been having moments where I wake up in the morning and have this absolute feeling of dread for what the days going to bring. I struggle with feelings of self consciousness, constantly worrying about how I’m perceived by others; and I look at my appearance and wonder if I’m anything special. I look at other girls and wish I could have their confidence. In short, I’ve felt like a bit of a joke lately. In all of this though, I haven’t lost sight of the silver lining that God’s forever reminding me off. When I found myself single over a month ago, I couldn’t have pictured dealing with it in the way I have. I’ve definitely said things that I’m not proud off and reacted badly at times when I shouldn’t have. I’m young and I’ve never dealt with a break up. But I’m at a point where all the sad moments are drowned out by moments of happiness. I look at my friends and the way they look at me. The way they hug me and laugh with me. That’s love. These girls have been the source of every good feeling that’s made me feel loved and I know God brought them into my life for this exact reason. I see strengths in their characters that I didn’t always notice. Sarah keeps my feet on the ground with words of insight. She knows what to say despite not having been in the same situation. Meghan balances that out perfectly by allowing me to stick my head in the clouds every now and then. Sarah grounds me and protects me from disappointment whilst Meghan opens my mind to the amazing possibilities that await me. Dups just makes me laugh until I can’t breathe. She reminds me that I really am happier and that I haven’t lost something that I won’t have again in the future. I used to look at girls who had relationships end and wonder why they took it so hard. I think in a lot of cases it isn’t the loss of a boyfriend that hurts the most. It’s the loss of a friend. Maybe even the loss of a period of your life where you felt most secure. That part of my life is over and here I stand. Firm and steadfast in my faith, anticipating blessings that the Lord has in store. I don’t regret anything in all of this. I don’t feel anger anymore which is the most freeing thing in the world! I am genuinely happy and the BEST part about all this is that, that happiness isn’t from worldly things. It’s from feeling God working in my life. He’s opening my mind to things I would never have considered when in a relationship. I feel at peace with all that’s happened and can firmly say that I’m trusting God entirely on this one. He’s preparing me for something. And he’s giving me a heart that forgives. I’m letting go of any negative feelings I’ve had in all this and pray for the other person, asking God to be with him and bring him happiness. I sleep sound every night knowing that God is doing that. The silver lining is scarily vast and it’s real! I write this in the hope that another girl reads it and sees that silver lining, if even for a moment. My Saviour heals all wounds and Lord, your patching up that wound pretty dang good.
If you really seek love, turn to the girls who’ve been there from the start. The girls who have cried with you, shared your pain, made you laugh, made you hope and made you joyful. Those girls have been placed in your life as vessels from your Maker. I believe strongly that God understands the struggle in trusting what you can’t physically see and because of this, I think he places people in our lives to remind us of him. You can see him. He’s all around you! He’s the one at the end of the phone when your upset. He’s the one who drops everything in a heartbeat to console you. Treat these friends well and value them alongside your faith. When they tell you, you’ll be okay – take it from me – they don’t get it wrong.
I literally haven’t typed a word on my blog for around a month. I still love writing and still feel rejuvenated in my faith. But I am a little disappointed in myself. I was lying in bed last night and thinking about how I’ve repeatedly said to myself this last while, "I’ll do this tomorrow" or "I’ll have time later" and it’s such a destructive thought pattern! It brings me back to months ago when I’d constantly put God on the backburner and it’s those kinds of thoughts that made me feel so down in my faith. I still care though. I care enough to try and make the time now. I can’t make excuses about having too much school work because when I really think about it, there IS time. Its way too easy to push God aside once you think you’ve got your relationship sorted. It’s always going to be there – but unfortunately for people like me, that doesn’t mean it will always be strong. If only I had a grip like Gods. That way, I’d never let go and become so concerned with everything around me and forget him. But he’s been on my mind and I’m taking time tonight to break myself back into the routine I followed so well in summer! It’s weird – I don’t think I’ve hit a wall in my faith, or even a rough patch. I just think I’ve been WAY too laid back. I put God on hold and ended up forgetting to get back to him. But I don’t feel defeated – I’m more than willing to sort myself out and writing about it has always been a huge factor in moving forward.
I’m going to be in University next year and I won’t be able to make excuses for why I don’t make the effort. It’s time with God that I should be prioritising! So, that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to consistently set aside time each night after school to have a little God time and bring him back to the centre – exactly where he should be.
I’ve been put through a small trial these past two days. Well, I certainly didn’t see it like that as I was going through it. I thought it was just a series of unfortunate events that God was happy to let unfold but now I’m on the other side - I can see Gods purpose in it. I was struggling with a lot of anxiety and despite feeling calm when with a friend, as soon as I was left to my own devices, I stumbled. In the heat of things, I forgot that God was there to listen. I forgot that he may even have a plan in it all. Now, I can definitely see that purpose unfolding.
I think that we need small trials and obstacles to keep us alert in our faith. I was lashing out at my boyfriend in a lot of ways when all I really had to do was pour it all out to God. Girls have this weird need to feel validated – we need to feel as though we have a right to be upset sometimes, which makes it so hard for us to swallow our pride and simply confide in God instead of others. It’s the decision I COULD have made, yet didn’t.
However, despite that mistake, everything turned out perfectly fine. My anxiety was settled and I could see things for what they were, which is a work of God. I went from praying for peace in how the situation had happened to THANKING God for opening my eyes. I’ve been enjoying reconnecting with God and I know he’s pleased I’ve made that step in my life. But that optimism blinded me to the hard work it takes to equip myself in dealing with a world that rejects God and as a result, rejects me sometimes. It’s been amazing reconnecting with God but I’m comfortable in my faith now. God’s pushing me a bit further in light of that, and is reminding me of the effort that being his servant requires. I think he used my relationship to demonstrate this to me. No wonder God blessed me with an incredibly patient boyfriend – I wasn’t myself this week, and he dealt with it like I knew I could rely on him too!
I’ve learnt that it’s great to rejoice in my relationship with God but I have to also use it as my armour. I can experience Gods love when I receive blessings, but his love is even more so present when I feel like things aren’t going my way. I did find a verse that reminds me of this lesson, and although it doesn’t talk about faith as such, it’s exactly what I think God was teaching me to do –
“Be sober; be vigilant for your adversary, the devil, walketh about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” – 1st Peter Ch5: v8
It may not be the most uplifting verse but prayer in its self uplifts me. I felt drawn to this verse which led me to believe God was reminding me of the importance of awareness. As rocky as the last few days have been, it’s all worth it when God speaks and assures you that it’s all in his grand scheme of things.
In light of impending exam results and university applications, I’ve decided I need to dedicate some time each day to exploring God’s will. I want to face my results seeing Gods purpose, and not what I consider to be my own failure.
In other words, I simply need to believe that whatever’s in store for me, God will get it right. He always does. This verse pretty much sums it up:
"Who, then, is the man that fears the Lord? He will instruct him in the way chosen for him. He will spend his days in prosperity and his descendants will inherit the land." - Psalm Ch25: v12-13.
I’m about to look at English courses in a few universities. I believe that God will guide me, just as he promised.
Expressing love and joy is required of all Christians in whatever way they feel is most true to themselves and their relationship with God. As said before, both arise from being confident in your faith and converting that confidence into praise and thankfulness. The most fundamental difference between Christians and non Christians, in my belief, is Peace. Christians have a sense of peace that’s unlike any other feeling in the world. It isn’t the kind of peace that is fleeting although that’s what it may feel like sometimes. It stays with us through the most difficult of times and when we’re lost and doubting ourselves, we can always draw strength from God to set our hearts at ease. My most favourite verse in the world makes a reference to Peace:
“I have told you these things so you may have peace in me. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John Ch16: v33
Having peace in God stops us from worrying about insignificant things on earth. God is bigger than any struggle or obstacle we ever face and as his children we can take heart in the fact that he is our Almighty Saviour. We rest safe in the knowledge that we can never be defeated, or so broken that we lose our faith in God completely. He simply won’t allow it! Sometimes, I forget just how powerful God is and I let myself become swept up in things that I don’t think he can control. But God assures me, that although I will face troubles, he has already surpassed any enemy I’ll ever face! Earthly worries are so pointless when placed beside the might of the Lord.
It’s impossible to never worry though. After all, I’m human and face stress and worries like any other person on earth! Sometimes I feel like I’m heading for something I’m not prepared for (exams!) and the thought of facing it is, quite frankly, terrifying. The only thing I’ve ever known to combat feeling overwhelmed is to lay it all out in God’s hands. To cast all my cares upon him because I know that he hears my worries and fears and seeks to encourage me! Sometimes, God will send me into the thick of things to show me that I am actually capable if I trust in him. Other times, he’ll help me avoid costly situations and I end up feeling thankful that I wasn’t thrown in head first. Regardless, my peace in the Lord endeavours. He’s given me no reason to feel otherwise.
This world is like a Rubix Cube in God’s hands. Half the time, we have no idea why it’s so confusing and makes us so stressed! But don’t lose hope because God’s got it sussed. Let him take your worries away and make you at peace with the world and at peace with him.
1 Peter Ch5: v7 – “Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.”