Thursday, September 11, 2014

Faith

I didn't set out to get lost.

I guess most people don't.

But somewhere along the way, I became unsure of myself, of who I am and what I stand for. I started looking to other people to tell me my worth. I started agreeing just to agree so we could keep the peace instead of voicing my opinions, because I wasn't really sure what my opinion was. I started listening to other people's plan for my life. The decisions I did make for myself tended to be impulsive and hasty, leaving the people who knew me best wondering if I was capable of handling the real world.

And then there's the whole "will of God" thing, as in, am I even close to it, and what is it, anyway?

I've listened to other people for a long, long time. I've believed Cosmo when they gave me their definition of pretty, and I didn't fit the mold. I've believed bible studies who have said that a submissive woman is one who bites her tongue and doesn't give her opinion. I've believed music that said that guys only like girls who are sexy and assertive. I've been scared of disappointing my family, afraid of making someone angry, afraid of pushing someone away, making them not like me anymore. 

It's all left me feeling a little bit restless

Sometimes I don't think there's much worse than not really knowing who you are. Than not being comfortable in your own skin because you don't really know what your own skin feels like. Than putting on someone else's opinion and having it weigh heavy on your shoulders and scratchy on your skin. I've forgotten how to dream my own dreams.

Lost. 

It's not what I intended, but it's where I've ended up.



In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will keep your paths straight.
{proverbs 3:6}

I have always wondered what God's will for me is. How am I supposed to figure that out when I don't have a plan written out for me? It's been a concern of mine for a long time that I haven't been in His will, because I don't exactly know what His will is. 

Sometimes this confuses me and then I stop thinking about it entirely.

That's when I feel lost.

I have always heard that all of us are broken people. But I've always held onto just a little bit of pride, thinking, of course I have some issues (doesn't everybody?) but I'm not completely broken. Because completely broken would mean I needed someone to fix me, and that I can't do it myself, and I don't really like that so much. 

It occurred to me on Sunday evening, after meeting with some friends for a bible study, that I am completely broken. That most of the time, I don't know what I'm doing when I'm parenting or when I'm leading a bible study or when I'm being a wife or a good neighbor or a friend. Sometimes I think I know what other people expect from me, but living up to spoken or unspoken expectations is unrealistic. 

Our hearts must be completely His before we can start to dream.
{jennie allen, restless}

God asks one thing of me, and it's one of the hardest things for me to do. 

Faith.

Believing in what we cannot see, living for what we cannot fully comprehend. 

Faith.

That as the author and perfecter of my faith, Jesus will do just that. Perfect my faith. Or lack thereof.

We have the benefit of already knowing the story when we read about Moses parting the Red Sea or Daniel going down into the lions den, but those people had their own set of doubts and issues, just like me, and they had to live by faith that God was going to do what He promised. 

We were made to do great things, but we cannot live with motives unchecked. 
If our motives are the glory of God, 
we have tremendous freedom to dream with hearts that are completely his.
{jennie allen, restless}

I have lived a long time for me and focused on me. It's a lonely place to be. It can't afford to let anyone else in, including God, because everyone else is a threat to my sole focus--me. 

I started out in life feeling lost, trying and failing to discover myself, and I've exhausted myself trying make my own path when one has been laid out for me, if I would just have the faith to step out.

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
{hebrews 11:1}

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