“Counting the costs,” “weighing your options,” “the pros and cons.”
These are some of the phrases you’ve probably heard if you have ever had to make a big decision. Whether it was choosing which model of car to go with for your family or what school you would spend your undergraduate experience at; we’ve all heard these or something like them. I think they’re a fine sentiment when it comes to choosing a car or choosing a restaurant but when it comes to our passions, dreams, purpose, etc., I don’t think "weighing the options" is the best option for us.
When I was a little girl, I would judge the people that didn’t know. The people that didn’t have the plans, passion, or the future completely mapped out. When I was a little girl, I had a plan. Not just that, I was confident and a bit abrasive with how great my plan was and how great life would be once I got to certain destinations. I believed that getting into my dream school and finally making it to college would fix everything. I put my hope into my future plans because my expectations of what I thought life would be like didn’t come true-- they were shattered.
Especially when my dad sat in that red chair across from me and told us that he and my mom would be getting a divorce. I realize now that I leaned so heavily on the plans and still do sometimes. I began to create the plans for safety and to feel steadied as the world around me was crumbling under my feet.
What I discovered later and still am, is that the plans we create to make us feel safe are simply superficial protection. The safety I create through plans, goals, etc., Can easily be destroyed, yet because it is me doing the planning, suddenly I’m in control and I can protect myself.
Most of us will spend our lives wondering, searching, yearning for answers for why and what we were created for. It’s understandable, this is a very big world we live in. Yet, there seems to be this disease when it comes to growing up; we are taught that the passions inside of our chest and meant to stay there, hidden and quiet. We weigh the costs of everything and choose what feels safest. What if the answers we are looking for were simpler than all of the pro/con lists and plans we constantly create?
You see, I’m 21. Wise, mature, and most certainly have all of the answers about relationships, economical decisions, and life as we all know it.
I’m glad you also speak sarcasm.
I don’t have any answers really. I am in my second year of school while in a global pandemic. I am graduating early with no actual clue if my degree is what I’m meant to do. Yet, I am learning the beauty and the freedom of not having to weigh the costs and feeling the heaviness of trying to control what is out of my grasp.
My life isn’t mine. Not anymore.
When people talk about being lost in college and trying to find their way, I think we all expect them to be smoking some drugs while listening to some bad music and to be wearing dingy flannels and be sitting on the lawn of their university pondering the existence of themselves. Well, the dingy flannel part is true for me, but, I have realized that by letting go and taking my hands off of the wheel of what I think my life is meant to be or should be, I’ve found myself.
When I let God have me, fully, whole heartily, mind, body, and soul, I find myself and my life.
I get it, I do. This sounds like another bad Christian song you hear on the radio with lots of water metaphors and references to breaking. However, this is not a melodic washed down tune… this is my life.
I’m not saying I’ve mastered the art of being “lost” and “free.” Right about now I can’t help but think of all of the applications for internships, graduate programs, and LSAT prep courses I have to do. I can’t help but think of the countless things “to do” and the countless places I still have to go. This is me, walking through this, in this, with you. I am not a professional when it comes to just leaning back and “trusting.” I think I’d like to explain a bit more besides giving you something that feels like a bad Pinterest quote from 2012.
No hate though… homegirl loves her some Pinterest.
You see people, we are all just a bunch of worked up control freaks. Why? We are scared out of our minds of being left, being unloved, not understood, and being forgotten.
How do we solve this?
We just stop planning and give it all to God? Sorta.
God isn’t against preparation, actually, he is quite for it.
“Prepare your work outside; get everything ready for yourself in the field, and after that build your house.” Proverbs 24:27 ESV.
However, when we become our own god and try to play that role by living our lives by our plans and our ideas of what will bring us happiness or satisfaction; that is when we crash and burn. I’m not saying if you like to plan out your meals in a google calendar that you’re going to hell. Actually, send me the link because I want to get into meal prepping. Having plans is fine! Having plans is good! Being prepared is good! What isn’t good is using your plans as a concrete wall between you and what the Holy Spirit is calling you to.
You can’t run from God… trust me, I’ve tried.
“The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.” Proverbs 16:9 ESV.
I think the question that we have to be constantly asking ourselves is this:
Am I being interruptable in my life for whatever God may call me to in this day?
Being interruptable and willing to set our walls down and trust isn’t a cakewalk. For me, it has come with a plethora of tears. When I lost the person I thought God had brought into my life for me to marry, I sobbed. I questioned, yelled, and grew confused by the heart of God. Why would God play games with my heart like this? Why would God place someone like this in my life? That’s when I had to take a whole heap of steps back and actually look at the character of God instead of projecting my fears and insecurities on him and his work.
God is loving.
God isn’t going to leave me.
God has good work in store for me and my life.
God isn’t punishing me for my past.
God protects me.
God adores me.
God. Does. Love. Me.
I DON'T HAVE THE ANSWERS AND THAT IS SCARY BUT I'M LEARNING IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There are things I may never see or understand on this side of heaven-- but I can remind myself when everything becomes hazy and dizzy where my trust and hope lies.
So my sweet friends, wherever you're at today and whatever heavy thing is making it hard to breathe, remember this:
You're safest in the arms of the one who made you, designed you, and destined you for marvelous and unique things. Lean back! Rest up! You can finally feel safe. God is the one who has the ultimate plan for you and he has been God for a long time-- trust that, and trust him. Child, close your eyes and know that you are protected, despite the crashing walls of the world before you.
Here I am being annoyingly vulnerable. I'm encouraging you wherever you're at... don't stay safe. Don't stay in that place because it makes the most sense. Don't settle for that relationship because they are better than "most." Don't hide and don't ignore those things inside of you that bring tears of passion streaming down your face... he placed them there for a reason. I choose to not try and control for false safety anymore. I choose to fight for more abundance in my identity as a child of the KING-- which means I don't have to try and do the "planning" anymore. I can give up the control freak thing, because man, I'm tired. I know you probably are, too. Let's get lost together, let's rest, let's praise in the unknowns, and rejoice because the REAL work was finished a long time ago.
With love, blessings, a heart that gets scared, a heart that is working on it, joy, Christmas cookies, forgiveness even when it hurts, laughter with a snort, and a cup of coffee,