As I sat in class last night, the instructor asked us to turn to Psalm 119:165 because God had placed that on her heart and she wanted to share that with us. So I opened my Bible and read the words aloud to the class:
Great peace have those who love Your law and nothing causes them to stumble. (NKJV)
She could not have known that just a few hours earlier, I read a completely different devotional that was also talking about the peace that God can give. She could not have known that I was wrestling with a decision/thought that the Lord has just made plain through the reading of this scripture. She could not have known how that scripture would be etched in my heart from that moment on… even though I can’t remember the other scriptures that I was actually supposed to memorize. No, she could not have known… but God did. He’s just that intentional.
Every day I go to work as a long-term substitute teacher and I fall deeper in love with my children than I was the day before. Working with special needs children has taught me so much and it has expanded my heart beyond its normal size and capacity. God has placed lesson plans, ideas, and tools in me that I did not think I could ever possess. He has literally shaped me for this time. So why have I been conflicted?
Truth about me: I’m addicted to learning. I’m one of those people who actually really loves informative trainings and attending school. I love the pursuit of knowledge. However, I tend to lack follow through with the pursuit of said knowledge. So as I stand in this class, day after day teaching these wonderful children, I’ve been wrestling with whether pursing a teacher degree is right for me. And that’s the conflict- I was worried about what’s right for me and not what God wants for me. Most times, those are two different things… and in this case, the two are so far removed from each other.
God is not green-lighting my pursuit of another degree for some divine reason. Instead of getting upset or going my own way like I used to, I am choosing to wait on the Lord (Psalm 27:13-14).
The old M.E. would have found a way to work around the “slight” obstacle of God’s objection.
The old M.E. would begin mapping out my entire life based on my fleeting desire (yeah, most of my desires only last for a minute).
The old M.E. would simply do M.E.
But that’s no longer an option. Thinking and living for myself is no longer possible, as I have committed my life to Christ. I made the very present choice to surrender to God- His word, His will, His way. That means that daily I choose to take up my cross and walk with Christ. That means that I am a vessel for Christ.
I have learned that God does give us the desires of our heart. What is often unspoken is that as we continue to seek God, His will becomes our will (His desires, our desires) and that’s when He gives us what’s in our heart.
Right now my only desire is to know the Lord. I am seeking first His kingdom, knowing that all other things will be added unto me later (Matthew 6:33). Because I am so focused on Him, I cannot be focused on anything else… and that’s how He wants it to be.
I am at peace with my decision to fully trust and rely on God. And through that peace, I rest peacefully, knowing that God has all things under control. I am PEACEd-out!
I saw a picture throughout social media that said “2016 the caterpillar, 2017 the cocoon, 2018 the butterfly.” THAT WAS MY ENTIRE TRUTH! Last year was the end of a phase of my life… and the beginning of a new M.E. This year has been the full transformation and next year- well, just wait to see what God is going to do!
1. Read all of the aforementioned verses. What are your thoughts or feelings? What is God saying to through them?
2. As 2017 draws to an end, what was your biggest lesson from the year?
3. Is 2018 your Butterfly year? If so, explain. If not, why do you feel that way?