Tuesday, July 8, 2014

28 years

                I’ll be twenty-eight tomorrow and I can’t help but look back on the last decade and see what the Lord has done in my life. Those (almost) twenty-eight years of singleness have taught me a lot about my relationship with the Lord. It’s brought me closer to him. It’s taught me trust and dependence on him alone. It’s taught me I don’t always need what I think I do. It’s brought me down hard paths, times full of goodness, and a life full of love from my creator. 

                The years of singleness have been hard sometimes, and full of tears from time to time, but I wouldn’t give up one moment of them because each of them have built a relationship with my Savior I would never give up. 

                Life has changed a lot for me since May. It’s changed so much sometimes I still don’t believe the gifts God has placed in my life are quite real.  It amazes me how quickly life can change and how sometimes God is so good I feel as if I don’t deserve the gifts he gives. 

                Last May my mom shared a story with me about a woman who through life’s hard times was willing to give up her will for God’s and say yes to him even when it would have been easier to say no. After more than a decade of saying yes to God during the hard times, her life abounded with amazing good gifts from God. So she turned to God and asked him why he was giving her so much. He simply replied, “Because you said ‘yes’ when you would’ve rather said ‘no.’”

                My mom told me she felt as though God wanted her to share the story with me because he was about to do something wonderful in my life because I too had been willing to say ‘yes’ to him.

Two days later the guy I liked (and I mean really liked) asked me out.

                Now if you’ve been following my blog you know I’ve never dated and never even had a crush on a boy, but this boy, oh this boy, I had a crush on big time. I’d met him the fall before, but never noticed him “that” way until April. Suddenly, he was all I could think about. I even told a friend that if she could hear everything running through my head she’d shoot me because it felt like I was up one second and then down the next. 

                I wasn’t sure if he liked me or even if it was within God’s will, so I dedicated hours to praying that his will be done. I prayed that if it wasn’t in his will that he’d take the feelings away; that I could walk away and forget all about it.

I prayed that no matter what, I live within his will even if it wasn’t what I wanted. I wanted to know that should the relationship happen it came about because HE willed it, not me. 

                Through it all I kept checking with God to make sure he was holding onto the key. I was afraid that somehow, some way, I was going to inadvertently take the key away from him, but each and every time he gently reassured me he was securely holding it. 

                The weekend he (from here on out known as G) asked me out I came away from church absolutely positive he didn’t like me the same way I liked him (unknown to me he’d planned to ask me out after church, but was distracted by someone else). 

I drove home that day and cried. My hopes were crushed and I felt as though the only thing I could do was give up my hopes and dreams to God. Obviously, my desires where not the same as God’s and I needed to give them into his keeping. 

I spent all of Sunday and most of Monday feeling depressed and fighting to place my desires within God’s grasp. In a way it felt as though God was asking me to give up My Isaac again (see the post “Giving up Isaac”). He was asking if his will was more important than mine. If I was willing to give up everything I wanted for his will in my life. It hurt, but I knew I did. 

Monday afternoon, still feeling down, I picked up my Bible and opened it to Psalms hoping to find comfort there.  And there in Psalm 27:13-14  I found it,

“I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”

It felt like a promise from God, that no matter the heartache now, he was still going to work good in my life; all I had to do was take heart and wait for the Lord.

Encouraged I got up to make myself some tea. On my way back to my room I noticed my phone had a message from Facebook on it. Curious as to who was sending me a private message I opened it only to find it was from G! In it, he asked if I’d like to go out for coffee sometime. A second message asked if Wednesday would work. 

Giddy, I answered, I’d love to! (Of course!)

It wasn’t until later I noticed his first message had been sent Sunday afternoon and the second sent Monday night. My phone never alerted me to the first message, even though I had been on Facebook several times during that time. 

Despite the anxiety it left G with, I believe God hid that first message from me because he wanted me to fully give up my will and give into his before he gifted me with the thing I wanted most. I was reminded once again that I would “see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.”

Two months have passed since that day and life just feels like it keeps getting better and better. There is no one I’d rather spend my time with, and I’m pretty sure the feeling is mutual ;)

 I look at him now and I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that God’s will and blessing is upon this relationship and that knowledge fills me overflowing with joy.

There have been so many moments in this relationship where I have seen God at work answering asked and unasked prayers.

Like a wonderful family friend telling him I was sweet girl and he’d never regret it if he asked me out :) 

Or the night I just really wanted him to text, not because I texted him, but just because he was thinking about me. I prayed and half an hour later he sent me the sweetest text with the picture of a flower.

Or how, I’d been praying for weeks for him to bring up whether we we’re officially dating or not, and God used someone to prompt him into asking me.

I cannot truly express with words how absolutely amazing and wonderful it is to know this relationship was (and is) orchestrated and blessed by God. 

God is good. He is good when all else looks bleak. He is good when his will trumps my own. He is good when life overflows with blessings.

Looking back at the past 28 years I know, beyond any doubt, despite how happy G makes me, I wouldn’t give up one moment of my single years. It was in those moments, turned into years, that I grew in the Lord. My relationship with him is more important than any earthly one no matter how much I may like a certain someone and I wouldn’t want to lose one moment of them.

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