I can’t even believe I’m writing this post.
And I’m not even sure I can find the words, but I am so excited to share with you.
Step back with me to 2010…A college graduation and a move back home. A long-term relationship headed for marriage had ended, my plans and dreams up in the air. I didn’t know what I wanted. I didn’t have specific career dreams. I didn’t know who I was. Frankly, I assumed I’d meet someone fairly quickly and end up married with babies without putting much thought into it. That’s everyone’s story, right?
God had other plans.
It’s been four years since that college graduation.
Four years of adventure. My first big girl job and career. New friendships, some stayed, some come and gone. Two health diagnoses. A revamped diet. New medication. A healed family relationship. A new car. Debt paid off. Two failed relationships, one of which failed twice. Death of two dear extended family members. Four raises. Two job title changes. Another family relationship mended. A new church. Grad program started and almost completed. Too many weddings to count. A new brother-in-law. A spiritual life overhaul.
Imprints on my heart. A life transforming.
Two words: Difficult. Beautiful.
Much of these four years have been raw sanctification, mixed with abundant grace. So. Many. Times. I just ached, carried along solely by the grace of God. At times confused and frustrated. But more than anything, brought to my knees in humility and worship. God spent much of these four years rescuing me from myself.
Tearing down. Building up.
Surrender. Drawing out my plans, my dreams; shifting from my hands to His.
Can I tell you? So often I struggled. So often I felt just…stuck. So often I wanted out, I wanted change, I wanted movement. I wanted something different.
God, what is your plan for me?! Where are you taking me?!
But He continued to whisper His grace. Through every downturn, through every ache, through every disappointment. Moment after moment. Year after year.
My plans are not your plans, my thoughts are not your thoughts.
Step after step of faith, trust, clinging to promises. Clinging to Truth.
And now….four years later, it’s all starting to make sense.
All the waiting, all the confusion, all the pain.
For four years He tilled the ground. For four years He didn’t stop working. For four years He poked and prodded and refined. Despite my questions, despite my pain. There was purpose, there was direction.
And I drew strength from this.
“The Lord will accomplish what concerns me; Your lovingkindness, O Lord, is everlasting; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.” Psalm 138:8
“I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27: 13-14.
He was equipping me, preparing me. Physically, emotionally, financially, academically.
Healing me. Growing me.
And now much of that, of this season, is visibly coming to an end.
And then just a couple short weeks ago, I finally, really, really, let it all go. True, the truest, surrender. Sweet, pure. Palms open wide, knees to the ground: God whatever you want for me, my ransom life is yours.
And then two sweet women in my life started praying for answers, for movement.
And then, perfectly timed. One week ago, it’s as if God said, alright it’s time. Let’s go.
A job dropped into my lap without me doing much of anything.
And just a couple days ago I accepted that job.
Ten hours away. In California. Near L.A.
Can someone pinch me?
Did I really just quit my job to move to LA?
Yes, yes I did.
And then the finances fell into place.
And then the housing and roommate situation fell into place.
And I can see the hand of God like never before.
And I just want to worship.
And suddenly those years of confusion are making sense. All those experiences. They had purpose (!).
I don’t know what life has in store for me. It’s a bit scary starting a whole new life, new friends, new world. But, can I tell you? I am beyond excited.
Because I don’t see me, what I’ve done or what I’ve accomplished or how I’ve changed. I see Him. His work. I see the glory. I see the grace.
I see a God who loves me and has plans for me. I see a God who hasn’t given up on me even when He should have.
Because grace abounded all the more.
So, this, this is for you.
For you, walking through seemingly unending years of pain and confusion. You, confused about His plan. For you….wondering if He is still working, taking you somewhere, refining you, or if He’s all but given up.
But He is. He’s preparing. Equipping. Sanctifying. Loving. Molding. Teaching. Transforming.
And when the time is right, He’ll move you, literally or figuratively. He’ll act. Purpose will begin to emerge.
And you will see the glory.
And the grace.
I promise dear friend. Hang in there and keep looking up.
Blessing await. His plan awaits.
You are adored by the Creator of the Universe.
And His plans for you are beyond your wildest imagination.
“But, as it is written, ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him.'” 1 Corinthians 2:9
(I move to Southern California at the end of July to take a job in the Student Life Department at the Master’s College and Seminary. Ladies and gentlemen, my posts will be coming to you from the Greater Los Angeles area! Nope…never saw this coming… :))