REMEMBER WHY YOU STARTED
We never have to be concerned about something not working or something not going how we planned. If we are relying on our human hands then that means we are standing on our own skill-set instead of waiting on His timing with His hands. I learned that we do not have to clean up to show that we can be trusted. Why?
Because He’s the kind of God who comes in and begins to pull back out all the mess we pushed in. Then sits down with us to say, ‘That was thoughtful, but let’s now go through this together.’ It was then that I walked with Him through the different habits, the people, the relationships, all of it. And rather than my human hands picking up the wrong ones, He picked up the ones to be thrown away (the no’s), the ones to be dusted off (the yes’s), and the ones to be placed on the shelf (the not right now’s). And I remember sitting in a gaze at my shelf, at my dustpan, and even at my trashcan.
And I remember I was certain that what it was, was good.
Because He is only good.
I read a quote once saying the only way to finish strong is to remember why you started. I have had that taped on my wall for years now. I believe the only way to keep moving at all, is to remember why you first started. When I moved back to Georgia, the home of bad memories and ache, I had no clue the hell I was walking into. All I knew is I heard the Lord say go, and something in me just had to. If anything didn’t make sense, it was moving back to the church where I was kicked out of youth group at. The fact of the matter is that when you are listening to the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit and choosing to be obedient, the enemy is not going to play fair. The last thing the enemy wants is to see you respond the call of God on your life. Especially when you say yes even when it doesn’t make sense to the human eye. Because I learned in those situations, where you really do look a little crazy because everything seems like its falling a part, those are the times where God gets the most glory and where God can show himself most true to you.
So here’s Hagar. Pregnant with a promise from God. Because pregnancy is indeed a gift from Heaven above. Hagar didn’t understand what all was going on inside of her. She didn’t understand why she was the one to carry out this promise. It was uncomfortable. It was emotionally draining. Her surroundings were attacking her. All the while God was intentionally having her go through a specific process that would teach us a lesson to impact our lives forever.
My two years that I spent at the College with the church I moved to in Georgia were hell on Earth. Honestly, I questioned why I was there almost everyday because of how uncomfortable my circumstances were. The only thing that kept my feet planted was the Lord telling me to stay. I worked everyday, cried more than twice a day, missed every event because I had to work, lost every relationship with my family, and felt as if I was never going to see the end.
It was an early Sunday morning in Spring, right after Daylight Savings. Pitch black outside and humid as can be. I had gotten home at two in the morning because of work and after three hours of sleep there I was at seven o’clock. Grabbing my Bible and notebook as I rushed out the door to try and beat the rain before I arrived to church. I opened the door to my black 1998, vehicle with spray paint on the passengers door, a sunroof that was stuck half way open, no air conditioning and a cracked engine. I didn’t have to worry about unlocking the door, because the locks were broken, too.
My car started bouncing it’s way to church when I felt a drop of rain on my forehead. I knew it was downhill from there. Before I had a chance for a backup plan, I looked like I had just taken a shower. Which was partially in my favor because then at least you couldn’t tell if the drops on my face were from tears or from raindrops. But I’ll never forget in the midst of how seemingly hurtful that morning was, I started singing an old hymn. And I am not a singer. But I made myself worship. As much as I didn’t understand. As much as I was hurting. As tired as I was and as confused as I was, I chose to praise my way through. Like David in majority of the Psalms, I had to learn and understand what it meant to praise in the storm. David understood that God is not a God who waits to meet you when you get OUT of the storm.
More-so, He is a gracious God who is waiting to meet you IN the storm. And when we learn how to praise IN the storm only then will we see our way OUT of the storm. I know it firsthand that we spend a lot of time waiting on God but sometimes, He’s the one waiting on us to lift our hands. He’s waiting to see if our praise is authentic or if our praise is conditional on our circumstance. I had to choose to believe that eventually, the storm has to run out of rain. My prayer is that we wouldn’t be a people who wait until it runs out to lift our hands to praise.
I hope we get something stirred in our souls that when the enemy comes like a flood, we will shout louder.