Saturday, November 3, 2012

Faith - It Ain't Easy!

We are on the verge of a big change, not sure what it is.  I've not felt this 'unsettled' since before we got the call to move to Charlotte.  I am confused, yet He is making my path pretty clear.  The confusion is just basically not understanding what He is doing.  But who said we need to understand it.   He has closed door after door for me with jobs thus far.  He has made clear our budget and what we can and can not do.
The call to move to Charlotte was from God.  The 'plan' of how things were going to go once we got here was ours.  We decided that I would not work upon moving here.  There was no flexibility in what we decided.  We planned that with Jeff's salary that that would be possible and with no childcare here it would be impossible.  Over the past few days, we have received news on top of news that it would not be responsible for me to continue at home full time right now.  This is after we looked at our budget last month - and we relaxed, saying, 'oh, look, all we have to do is cut back here and there and we are good.'  I relaxed thinking that my stay-at-home mom days would continue and even signed on to volunteer at Proverbs 31 Ministries one day a week.  I was excited about 'getting my foot in the door' at Proverbs 31 Ministries, yet at the training Thursday, I couldn't shake the feeling of 'what am I doing here?'  Could have been the devil's whispers, could have been that I went before God on this.  Although I have been praying for His will faithfully.  The spiritual warfare is great.

But the past two days has made us very aware of the times - increasing insurance costs, eliminated cell phone allowances at work, and taxes that are insane.  I took the afternoon yesterday and in between crying fits applied for 5 more nursing jobs (day shift this time - trusting that God will work out the details of where the kids will go) and scouring the listings for any other jobs that may work - cursing the observation that nursing has become so area-focused - if you don't have experience in the area or certification in the area - a lot are not interested in you - it doesn't help that it's been awhile since I've touched anyone.  After the furnace in the house would not cooperate this morning and blow hot air and the squealing brakes on my van reminded me that they need to be changed before our Christmas trip home - I am even more convinced that something needs to change.

I am holding on to something...I have not fully surrendered to Him.  I had applied for jobs, but I had not sincerely said - 'Ok, God, use me how You need me' - I have been saying 'I'm applying, but hopefully I won't hear back and it'll all just be ok.' or 'I can only work when it is convenient for me and no other times.'  I have not wanted to work.  I do not want to give up time with my family.  Jeff does not want me to work.  We don't want our perfect plan to be thwarted.  Our move to Charlotte was exciting - a better paying job, room for advancement at work, more opportunity for everyone, a bigger house, a chance to 'prove ourselves', dollar-signs in our eyes...  God did not move us here for more money and to give us an easy life.  But that is just what we've had our focus on, fighting every step of the way - but every step forward we take a few steps back.  Oh God forgive us for allowing money and advancement and 'our plan' to bump You off of the throne that only You should occupy.  How did that even happen?  I absolutely know He has something big for us here.  He has got to work things out in us first - junk like this.

While at the Proverbs 31 training, one of the other volunteers purchased a book for me.  Sweet, huh?  All of the ladies had been reading it - their pastor's newest book.  They were discussing it and I commented about how it sounded like where I was at in my life lately.  After devouring a few chapters, I know that God is speaking to me through this book.  And it is no mistake that I was at that training and that Angela was led to get me the book.  I have been reminded that being just good enough is not what God wants out of me.  And striving for greatness (or lots of money and success) is ungodly and leads to lots of frustrations.  But living the greater way - that's what this book is teaching - it requires confidence in Him, clarity to what He's calling us to do, and the courage to do what He says to do.  Pastor Steven Furtick goes on to say in his book Greater,  "Approach the greater life knowing God has worked it all out in advance.  He'll give you the day's orders when you show up at the job site because He's more interested in your full obedience than your full understanding."

And as I slowly open up my fingers, which have a death grip on my stay-at-home mom role and the dream of living a plush easy life, I want to know where I'm going...what is next?  Where are You taking us?  What are You going to do?  How will we make this work?  What if?  God is a God of details - He has every one of them worked out.  But I do not need to know them.  Do I need to hear what He's got up His sleeve presented to me in a neatly typed memo, decide whether I like it or not, and then move forward with Him?  That would not take any faith.  Not knowing details and going ahead with Him, giving up what our plans are in exchange for His perfect plan for us - that is faith.  And no one said it was going to be easy.

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