As I continue through this journey called life I continue to learn the importance of in trusting in the perfect plan and timing of the Lord.
Recently, I have been reflecting on the things I often heard growing up in a semi-conservative baptist church in the Midwest. "He may not come when you want Him, but He's always right on time", "Can't nobody do me like Jesus", and anything that started with "First giving honor to God, who is the head of my life". In general I found these sayings and others to be dramatic and over used. I also found most expressions of praise and gratitude toward the Lord to be used by people who just wanted attention.
After going through so many struggles in the last two years I have a new appreciation and understanding of the power of the Lord, His voice, and His plans. I remember the first time I heard God speak to me. I was in 8th grade and had been preparing for cheerleading try-outs. 9th grade was right around the corner and cheering under the Friday Night Lights had been my dream since watching my cousins cheer as child. As I prepared to walk into the room to face the judges I said, "Ok Jesus, it's just you and me. I need you to be with me." I then began to hear a song play in my head..."He wouldn't bring you this far to leave you". This moment was a turning point in my relationship with God.
That experience led me to seek the voice of the Lord. Throughout college I worked on reading the Bible and mediating on the word so I could hear the voice of the Lord clearly. since then I have gone through trials and tribulations with family, friends, school, careers, and all other facets of life. Through it all I have learned to lean on the the Lord. To trust His word, planning, and timing. Learning this has come through painful trial and error, but through it all I have always felt the presence of the God.
In the past few months I have felt my self slipping away from God. Praying less. Reading my Bible less. Meditating less. I could feel the disconnect and knew it was a problem. As they say, you are either in a storm, coming out of a storm, or about to go into one. I knew I needed to get myself back together.
Recently, the stormy waters have returned to rock my world and as always my first step was to turn to God through His word and prayer. Yesterday, as I was closing my laptop to start my prayer and meditation I noticed I had missed an email from my aunt containing a daily devotional. Normally the emails contain a passage of scriptures, an encouraging message, and a prayer. When I opened this one I was so disappointed to see it contained one scripture. Then I read it.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. Isaiah 43:2
That verse was everything I needed. It was another reassurance that the Lord see me, hears my cry, and has a plan for my life. Now when I think back to all of the times that I believed people were dramatic or overreacting in their worship. Now I can see why they were so passionate. I understand their emotions. I have tried and seen that God's timing is perfect and His promise is unfailing.