I’ve lived with the illusion that I control my life for a very long time. That mindset so obviously lacks wisdom in retrospect, but I still cling desperately to it, even though I know that ultimately, what happens to me isn’t completely up to me.
James talks about this kind of foolishness in his letter the Jews in dispersion. He says:
Listen carefully, those of you who make your plans and say, “We are traveling to this city in the next few days. We’ll stay there for one year while our business explodes and revenue is up.” The reality is you have no idea where your life will take you tomorrow. You are like a mist that appears one moment and then vanishes another. It would be best to say, “If it is the Lord’s will and we live long enough, we hope to do this project or pursue that dream.” But your current speech indicates an arrogance that does not acknowledge the One who controls the universe, and this kind of big talking is the epitome of evil.
Moving to Waco in the fall is a daunting prospect. We don’t have housing or employment, and so far, we’ve had a disappointing week in that department. It’s not like we’re not trying, or that we’re being lazy. We’re seeking out several avenues of finding an apartment and jobs. It’s hard to feel like it’s where we’re supposed to be when I think about the few small doors that have closed on us.
I still think that we’re supposed to go to Waco, and I’m supposed to go to Truett. I believe that God has led us to this point so far, and that He’s going to continue to do us. It’s a struggle to remember that He opened one big door for us there, or that when we visited Truett, we both had a peace about it, and felt that it was somewhere we belonged. God’s provided the funds for my education there, and I’m very appreciative. I still believe that it’s where we’re supposed to be, despite the speed bumps that are occurring along the way.
Lord willing, Waco is where we’ll be in August. I’ll be starting school, and Kelsey will be starting a job. I know in my head that if God is leading there, He’s going to provide for our needs and take care of us, but it’s tough believing that in my heart. That lack of belief is a ridiculous and stubborn sin of mine. It shows that I forget how God has been so good to me in the past, and that I’m not trusting Him to take care of my needs. I feel the need to chart my own journey, make my own provisions, and not leave such details up to Him, even though He has a much better idea of where we’re going. My worry and anxiety show in many ways that I’m still learning to trust that my Creator truly has my best interests at heart.
I’m learning to be full of faith. I have to trust. I have to depend and lean on someone I can’t see. It’s a struggle.
Henri Nouwen’s words have been a comfort to me lately:
In the solitude of prayer we slowly unmask the illusion of our dependencies and possessiveness, and discover in the center of our own self that we are not what we can control or conquer but what is given to us from above to channel to others. In solitary prayer we become aware that our identity does not depend on what we have accomplished or possess, that our productivity does not define us, and that our worth is not the same thing as our usefulness.
I’m learning and growing from this. Keep Kelsey and I in your prayers as we work through this time of our lives, and that we’ll grow closer to each other by learning to be more dependent on our Father who knows what we truly need.