Thursday, February 13, 2014

Accepting Life's Little (and Big) Surprises

Recently, I went through one of the most difficult weeks of my life. A lot of changes were coming at me at once, and everything that I had been expecting to happen were falling apart in front of my very eyes. Everything came to a screeching halt.

I didn't want to do much when everything happened. However, I kept forcing myself to do things because I knew that it was better than wallowing. I was even tempted to skip out on going to church services because I wasn't sure I could sit through services without bursting into  tears. Yet, I went anyway. I'm so glad I did, too.

I'm sure that God worked out somehow for me to hear certain things, because I needed to hear them. During the time, I was staying with some friends, and at the congregation they attend they had been studying about Mary, the mother of Jesus.

In Luke 1:26-38, Mary is being told that she is about to be the mother of the Messiah. As would be expected, she had some surprise and confusion, especially since she'd never been with a man before. This is HUGE-think about it-you're a good, wholesome God fearing young girl and you've just been told that you are about to bear a child. I'm sure if many of us were in her shoes in her time we'd be afraid and wondering what this would do to our reputation.

What she does next shows us just how much she trusted her God. When the Angel of the Lord finished telling her everything that was going to happen, she simply said, "Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word." (38)

She accepted it and trusted God enough to work everything out, even though she didn't completely understand everything yet. And in some verses later on, we see Mary joyfully singing to God in awe, humbleness, and thanks (46-55). This event came in and completely changed the direction of her life. She simply let go, and allowed God to work in whatever way He saw fit.

This made me think about my situation a lot. While my situation isn't quite the same as Mary's by a long shot, I realize that God is working. While I don't entirely understand yet why things took a turn the way that they did, I know that He is completely in control. He sees my story from beginning to end. There are things He wants me to learn, experience and figure out. He's leading me to the next stage in my life. He'll use my situation to help me grow.

Over the week afterwards, I noticed something happening to my heart. It didn't hurt as much. It was because I released my grasp on the situation and gave it up to God. I was (and still am) a little sad, but my heart was starting to fill with a joy of knowing that I'm not going through this alone. God is holding my hand, and He makes me strong (Philippians 4:13).

God's plans are usually a lot different than our own. I've been learning that lately. No matter how I or anyone may try to resist, His plans always prevail. But, I know that it'll turn out okay. One of my very favorite verses says, "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11)

There's also this one: "And we know that for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose." (Romans 8:28)

The truth is, every thing is going to be alright. Release your grip and let God do what He's going to do.

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