The Darkness – It isn’t supposed to be like this
Last October, I surrendered everything I had been holding on to to God. Within a matter of days, my life changed, and since then, the only thing I have been able to hold on to is God. He began a new work in me that is uncomfortable, scary, and frustrating. Though this process seems so dark, I have been learning to trust and depend on Him more than I ever have.
During this time of my life, I realized that He is answering my prayer to go deeper and on another level with Him. The deepness that He is taking me through requires a trusting faith, a real faith without any room for doubt or another plan and a faith that can’t be measured by expectations of even human comprehension. A faith that is completely reliant on God to carry out His Will, His Way.
The Call – This was not a part of the plan
I’ll never forget the Sunday morning that I audibly heard God begin to answer my payer and confirm that I was to go to Greece on a mission trip. During the prayer at the end of service, I audibly heard God tell me that my sign to go would be “eating Greek food.” Of course, God does not answer prayers like this. Right? Apparently, if you pray for a sign to hit you over the head like a cast iron skillet, you do get your answer and it is never in the way you expect but, ironically, in a way that is real to you.
During this time, I remember replying to God as if we were having a conversation that I wouldn’t be going because we do not have Greek food in Eastern Kentucky, so of course, I knew I would not be going to Greece to be a part of this mission trip. End of Story – I tried, I sought, and did my part. What a relief! Although I felt relief, I must admit that I was disappointed as well. Isn’t life funny sometimes? I was even rebuking myself for having thoughts of eating Greek food in church – I had never tasted Greek food, so why was I even thinking like that?
As we were getting in our car to leave, a friend came up to me and handed me a container of food. I thanked her and asked, “What kind of food is this?” Her response caused my breath to stop as I heard her say, “It’s Greek.”
At that moment, I realized that was indeed God’s spirit talking to my spirit, and I heard the audible voice of God. I explained everything to my husband, of course, with a “you’re not going to believe me!” and in the church parking lot my fate was sealed – I was going to Greece and God had answered my prayer in such a way that I could not deny it, nor could I say no.
I was going to see the process through and would do everything in my power that I was supposed to do to follow through with my commitment to God and the plan He has for my life. It has been a bumpy journey – I have been stretched in ways I could have done without, but my faith has soared and is continuing to a new level. There were many times I questioned if I could even be able to go due to time off, increase of the cost of the trip, deadlines to have a percentage of the trip paid for, and the dates of the trip being adjusted due to unforeseen circumstances.
Family and friends have questioned why I am even doing this and have suggested that it is not the right time. God put a Rhema Word in my heart, and He audibly told me the sign I would receive before it happened, so I have been clinging to that Word and trusting God to provide. When our trip price increased, I was experiencing many sleepless nights, and one night when I woke up, God reminded me, “God’s Will, God’s Bill.”
From that moment on, I chose to have faith that God would carry out His provision for the spoken word I received. God has given me these moments to have something to cling to when the doubts and questions come in and when my mind races. I always go back to that Sunday in the church pew. Now, it is less than a couple of days that my bill is due, and I only owe $184. God is faithful, and He does provide. His ways are higher, greater, and as humans, we just can’t understand.
The Day I Died
This season of darkness has not lifted, but the beautiful thing about walking through this time in my life is that when God does speak, it is audible, loud, and clear. It can not be denied that it is God. As the day until our team leaves for Greece approaches, I must admit that I am beginning to have my reservations as questions run through my mind. Am I doing the right thing? Is it selfish of me to leave my kids and potentially risk my life causing them to not grow up without their mom? I can’t help but remember the pain of losing my dad at 19. Leave my husband widowed? Leave my mom with her worst fear coming true? My heart tightens with deep pain thinking about these scenarios.
The truth is, even in today’s society, no matter where we go as Christians, we have the chance of being persecuted, and that is growing every day. People lay down their lives willingly every day. Am I truly ready to lay down my life? As I have been asking myself this hard question, I have come to realize that, yes, I am. In the face of the unthinkable, if my wonderful Savior has the unthinkable apart of His great plan, then I will trust His heart. I will be joyous that I was given the opportunity.
Sometimes, I must take a deep breath and move forward. I’m not sure what circumstances await me, but I do know that I will be forever changed. I’ll gladly go, dying to self every day if that is what it takes. He called me. Life does not exist apart from God, and through Him, I am alive.
Seeking to go deeper with God has taken me into the darkness, but during this time, I am learning His voice, who He is, who I am, and hopefully, discover another part of me that is waiting to be unleashed.
Even though I am blindly following, I can’t wait to see what is about to happen – not just in my relationship with Jesus but on this trip and in the next season of my life. For now, I’m trusting His good, good heart because He is worth it all.
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on hbarefootinaholler.com
Featured Image by Kelly Sikkema