I have officially changed my flight from March 1st to April 27th. It has been confirmed to me through Scriptures that God has given me the “OK” to serve this family longer. As excited as I am about this, I also have absolutely no idea what’s happening right now in my life. But I’m trusting that God is causing this intense, life crossroad that I have stumbled across this week.
Because I am volunteering as a teacher here, I’ve had countless people ask me if being a teacher is something that I would want to pursue as a career.
My answer: not really.
Teaching is awesome and super rewarding, but it’s not something that I would like to make into a career for myself. I would like to do a one-on-one, teacher’s aid job, but I don’t believe I see that in my future right now.
However, I’m starting to not understand that I really don’t know have a clue about anything in my future.
For years, I have known that one of my greatest passions is youth work. Last year, I applied for a youth counseling program, which didn’t end up happening because God had different plans. The more I think about what I am going to do after I get back to Canada, the more I realize that I actually, really don’t know. For years, I have answered the repetitive, annoying question of what I’m going to do with my life is youth work.
But now, I am really scared.
Because I think God is in the midst of putting new passions and desires in my heart. I think God is changing my plans completely and altering them in a whole different direction. And I have no idea what direction that is.
This week was an emotional rollercoaster. While questions of my ever-changing future plans swirled about in my mind, my flesh was also fighting against hard-core temptations. Few may know, but I have an extremely hard time turning away from cigarettes. At least a few days in every month, I intensely crave cigarettes. This month has been different. I have been going through an unbearable time of craving for about 10 days straight. I have been so irritable, irrational, and emotional. It’s really hard to get a grip when there’s one thing that my flesh is demanding to have. In light of this situation, I am so thankful I am going through this while I’m in Africa. It’s basically impossible to find cigarettes here, which has forced me to not give in since I have no access.
It’s been a rough time.
However, every time I have fully surrendered my all to Christ and I know that He’s doing something big, my hardships and emotions become anything but sane. So I quickly surrender again, because I can see how weak I really am, which intensifies my temptations, and the cycle continues. I find this to be extremely encouraging. To me, it shows that the enemy is getting so antsy, that he’s trying anything and everything to trip me up.
I have no idea where my life is going. I have no idea what my passions are anymore. I’m terrified to think over those questions. All this week in my devotions, it has been about trusting the unknown, trusting wherever The Lord leads.
“I’m pretty sure I’m doing that; I just followed The Lord’s leading all the way to Africa!”
And then, He chastens me.
I have to keep trusting into the unknown. It’s not just a one time thing; it’s a lifetime thing.
I feel like I am in a series of an endless amount of rooms, connected together like a giant hallway. Each room I enter, it’s dark. I have no idea where I am, where I am going, or how to get into the next room. Sometimes, my Guide opens a curtain and let’s me have a little bit of an idea of what the dark room looks like. But there is no such thing in this one. I tell my Guide, “Okay, Guide, I trust You. Show me where to go. Lead my steps.” I follow His voice, but there’s other voices in the room. They distract me and disguise their voices, tripping me up into the wrong directions. I know it’s not the right way, so I call to my Guide again, “Please, Guide. Let Your voice be the only voice I follow.” Once again, it’s only His voice I hear. I follow it, and I’m moving. It’s right this time. But I’m struggling. He’s guiding me towards the light-switch, and I can almost touch it. I stop listening to the voice; I’m pretty sure I can handle this on my own now. But I lose direction, and I’m just getting frustrated and fidgeting again. I’m now more lost than I was to start with. I look back and I see the previous door I had just gone through. I know the light on is in there. I know I liked it in there. But I know that I can’t live in the past, I can’t grow in my future if I don’t move forward. I desperately call to my Guide again, “Please, Father. I’m sorry for believing my way was better. Your ways are higher than mine. Direct my footsteps.” My Guide takes my hand, and I follow His voice. I finally reach the light-switch, but it’s too hard to turn on my own. He knows I am weak, and He is much stronger than I, so He turns it on for me with ease. I can see the whole room now. I can see what He saw all along in His night vision. I see the dangers I was stumbling on, and I see the path that He was leading me through. We joyfully walk together across the room, and I praise Him with thanksgiving. We enjoy the room for a little while, reminiscing the journey and talking about what I have learned for next time. He then tells me it’s time to move on and He opens the next door; another dark room.
My life is a series of dark rooms. Our Christian life is a series of dark rooms. Unless I surrender every step to my Guide, I’m going to be completely lost with no way to move forward.
The Holy Spirit has given me the realization that He is leading me into better, unknown places. And it’s okay that I don’t know yet. That makes the adrenaline part of the adventure. I don’t know if youth work is in my next room. I don’t know if meeting my future husband is in my next room. I don’t know if more travelling is in my next room. I don’t know if He’s bringing forth passions I never even knew I had. But my Father is currently, drastically reminding me that trusting in His guidance, protection, and sovereignty is the only way my life will move forward successfully. Successfully in the fact that what I will be doing is pleasing to Him; only Him. He holds my heart, He holds my future. My Almighty God knows me more than I know myself.
So whether it be my temptation to smoke, my scary unknowns, my humanity’s weak patterns; He is my protective guide.
Why shouldn’t I trust Him?
“Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.”
– 1 Corinthians 13:12
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.”
– Psalm 139:23-24
“Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing. For the glory of your name, O Lord, preserve my life. Because of your faithfulness, bring me out of this distress. In your unfailing love, silence all my enemies and destroy all my foes, for I am your servant.” – Psalm 143:10-12