If a year ago you had told me I’d be sitting where I am today, I might have laughed. I would probably have sneered a little. I would absolutely have thought you were crazy.
But a year ago, I was raw, hurt, confused and somewhat angry. For reasons I still don’t know or understand, my livelihood was stripped in a chaotic, unceremonious manner. The sheer jolt of rejection ripped open wounds I didn’t even realize I had.
I tried to put on my best “faith face,” but the reality of it was that I couldn’t understand why God allowed this in my life, not when He had been so good with it for so many years.
After spinning and stewing and processing for quite a while, He began to work on me. I began to soften and even let Him into my pain a little more.
What I began to realize was that my neat and tidy answer at the beginning of it all were really just a
defense mechanism that I had perfected over the years every time I faced rejection. The only difference this time was that I was saying different words than what used to fill my vocabulary. My faith, at least in this particular area, wasn’t real. Ouch.
What He was showing me was that I need to learn to LIVE OUT the faith I profess. In ALL areas of my life. And that wasn’t happening. I needed to learn what total trusting faith really was.
I needed to stop pressing on. To just pause long enough to let Him step in front of me so that He could begin to teach, guide and lead me through this twist in the road. A twist that while I didn’t know about or expect it, He did and He meant it for good.
I can look back on those days with more understanding. My life was on cruise control and while there were many good things where I was, there were also many distractions that were keeping my eyes elsewhere, allowing me to trust in things other than Him. Today, I don’t have that. I NEED him for everything. I don’t know where the money for next month’s bills is coming from, or what will happen if someone gets sick and needs a doctor, but He does. He has been faithful and I trust. That I can say without a doubt.
Recently, my Bible study group began a session in the book of James. The teaching is speaking loudly and powerfully to me. I never really knew what perseverance meant. Now, I’m starting to see it in full force in my own life.
Yes, a year ago, things were different. So was I. Today, I can honestly say that I like who I am more than I did back then. I can say without a doubt that my faith is stronger because of the trials of the past year. I can say that while the trials may not be over, I view them differently. I see them for what they are. The means to an end – to render me mature and complete, lacking in nothing. That probably won’t happen this side of Heaven, but now that I have a better understanding of the process, I trust that it will be okay.