August 3, 2017

[on incomprehensible peace that looks like God's fingerprints]

Looks like the joke is on me..

I was all about saying YES - boldly + proudly proclaiming that 3-letter word - to writing more back in March. And it's now.. August? Oops.

Here's to fresh restarts and coming back to the things that give me life again and again.

Life looks a lot different than it did when I wrote my last post in March. I quit my corporate job of five years (say whaaaat) back in June to pursue something that truly gets my heart pounding. A month ago - to the day - my husband and I packed up our Penske (it was cheaper than a U-haul) and paraded our Oklahoman selves down I-70W to Denver, Colorado in hopes of *living our best lives now*. Okay, not really, but sort of. I'm starting grad school at Denver Seminary later this month to study Clinical Mental Health Counseling. A little different than my corporate job dealing with oil & gas storage and transportation, dontchya think? It was a shock to some, but to the people that know me more deeply, it wasn't. Just as it shouldn't have been.

In the past I have written a TON about how change affects me - how transitions are hard for me. And I fully anticipate this becoming hard after I realize what the HECK we've done by moving away from our family, friends and church community. But for now, it's been wonderful. Truly.

The thing that I have most enjoyed about this transition is seeing God's fingerprints on everything. YES, we say that God is sovereign - that he is ruler over every tribe, tongue and nation (Rev. 7:9). We say that we believe he is consistently working all things for our good (Rom. 8:28). We say that he is constantly guiding us and counseling as us we go (Psalm 32:8). But how often do we r-e-a-l-l-y look closely enough to see this happening?

God graciously opened up mine and Andrew's eyes during this process to see his movement in our lives. It's been nothing short of amazing, and I've surely written down every little aspect of this journey that has pointed us to praise his name. And rather than list out every single thing that our sweet Father has orchestrated to get us to where we are today, I want to encourage you - in your transition, in your staying, in your in-between.. wherever you are.

Because whether or not you can actively see it, God is working on your behalf. This is because he loves you with an unfailing, passionate, steadfast love. He isn't focused on some future version of yourself or a previous version of yourself that was "more solid, more faithful, less mistakes".. it's the YOU that you're living in right at this very moment. He wants to open up your eyes to the good that he is doing in and around you. The Creator of the world - of galaxies and human anatomy and gravity - wants to have a relationship with YOU. He wants to speak to you as you open up your ears and your heart to listen to him.

And as we begin listening - searching to find him in both our most commonplace routines as well as our life-changing decisions..

He graciously pours over us incomprehensible peace. Incomprehensible for the fact that it is incomparable for it cannot be found anywhere else. Of course it can't be found elsewhere. This peace is unlike any other peace that we've experienced. It's not the temporary peace we find from placing stock in relationships with significant others; this peace shatters the very minute we begin to realize that we were never supposed to place our worth in it. This peace can't be found in a self-help book because eventually you will find that you're not fixable on your own. This peace isn't found in some self-discovery backpacking trip across Europe - because once you discover all that you are on your own, you will most likely not be at peace [party foul].

This is what I strongly experienced over the past 7 months during mine and Andrew's Colorado processing time. This peace had God's fingerprints all over it. In what could have easily been an anxiety-fueled, uncomfortable, twiddling-my-thumbs-for-7-straight-months kind of season, God showed me kindness by revealing his powerful + sovereign personality to me thereby leading me to peace. I didn't have to wonder what would happen if this counseling school thing didn't work out or focus my thoughts on what rebuilding community in a completely new state would look like if we did make the move. 

Because he was sweetly reminding me that he is working all things for my good. And there is no room for doubt in that.

31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

-Matthew 6:31-33

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? 

-Romans 8:31-32