hope

We live in a fast-paced, success- and entertainment-driven, drive-thru going, busy, “I want everything now!” society. This is very prevalent in most suburbia and city lifestyles. I would know; I have worked in customer service within the food industry for many years now! It has been so easy for me to feel stressed out, and I have been on-the-go the past several months. Yet deep down has always been this longing for more. Actually, what most of us need is LESS; less of us and this world and more of Him! John 3:30 says, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”
As I am drawing nearer and nearer to the time when I will actually GO to Ecuador, I have felt pressure from all of the things around me. It seems there is always a deadline, or a goal to meet, an obstacle to jump over, a curveball. Yet I again came to the realization that my relationship with Him is most important and He has everything under control. He wants us to never forget to seek his face. A verse that keeps coming back to me is Psalm 27:8, which says,
“You have said, ‘Seek my face.’
My heart says to You, ‘Your face, Lord, do I seek.’”
It is during the times we spend in his presence, seeking Him, reading his Word, worshiping through music, praying and listening for that still small voice, that we are filled(and some of us have other ways we are filled as well!); we are filled with all we need on this crazy journey. I still know He is leading me to pursue some amazing dreams, and even doing just my part seems quite overwhelming at times, yet I must (we all must!) trust that it will happen according to God’s will and timing.
1 Chronicles 16:8-11 are also very encouraging!
“Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!
Sing to Him; sing praises to Him; tell of all his wondrous works!
Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice!
Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!”
This passage leads us to do many things! But we must continually receive and be filled by the Lord and his Spirit if we are to have anything to share! We must be willing to do this and wait upon Him, or else we will be easily discouraged and jaded by the sorrows and difficult circumstances that hit us day after day.
Psalm 62:1, 2, 5, says,
“For God alone my soul waits in silence; from Him comes my salvation.
He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.
For God alone, O my soul, Wait in silence, for my hope is from Him.”
Would it be safe and true to say that this WAITING and SILENCE go completely against the norm? Why wait if you could have it now? And don’t we want our opinions to be heard? In some cases, now is the time to act or speak; at other times, there is a stirring in our hearts for something greater and more. My heart has been burning for missions and sharing Christ overseas for quite some time now (as many of you know!), but it has been no quick trip in getting there! I truly believe that there are certain aspects of our lives in which God really does save the best for last, or for later in life at least. Jesus’ first miracle was turning water into wine. In that culture, the best wine was usually brought out first, but in this case the people believed the wine brought out at the end (the water turned into wine!) was best! I don’t believe that God holds out on us. He is a great orchestrator who is working everything out in our lives as we seek Him daily. He also is waiting, waiting for the perfect time when we will be ready to receive. If you are single, maybe He is preparing you and that other person to BE ready when you do actually meet (or when the time is right! Ha! Feel like I’m repeating myself.) In my case, God has wanted me here to love and share Him with those around me. I will never be completely ready to GO; I am human, flawed. But I have learned a lot; I have learned the beauty of SURRENDER, of TRUSTING Him and SEEKING Him while WAITING, of being PATIENT, of putting my HOPE in the Lord rather than in other people. I see now that no matter where I am (no matter where we are), His will is that we would express who He is and be a light in the darkness.
Whatever situation you may find yourself in today, be encouraged! The Lord sees you and knows your heart more than anyone else. It may take longer than you would like, but His ways are always best. (:
Psalm 27:14
“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!”