I woke up Tuesday morning with a sense of urgency. I had a lot on my plate: the apartment was a mess, I anticipated a crazy work day, and, of course, I wanted to write my book and my blog with very little time to do so!
Despite all the activities that stood on the path before me, I knew what I needed to do first. I needed to put my day in God’s hands. On Tuesday, I sacrificed the small amount of time before I had to leave and trusted God to show me what I needed to know.
And wow, did He show me!
You’ll never guess what I learned in my devotional. It was about rest and trusting God to do the impossible! They alluded to the story of Jesus feeding the five thousand. We always focus on that incredible story, but what the disciples did before this great miracle happened is just as significant. Before sending out His disciples to encounter these hungry people, Jesus asked them to spend some time alone in prayer. Time alone with God is so important, because it allows us to center our attention on Him. We need to rest in God in order for Him to strengthen us to overcome whatever obstacles we face in the day ahead.
One of the most powerful things I did on the retreat this past weekend was just let God control my day. Obviously, He’s always in control, but sometimes I like to think I’m in control. We had a schedule that we were suggested to follow, but nothing was mandatory. I set my alarm so that I could follow the schedule. When my head hit the pillow, I fell asleep peacefully.
Several hours later, I detected the sun shining through the curtain. My alarm should be going off soon, I thought, snuggling deeper into the covers, allowing myself a few more minutes to sleep. After dozing off again, I realized that my alarm hadn’t gone off. Is the sun really up this early? I looked at my phone. If I’d wanted to follow the schedule, I should have been up 45 minutes earlier.
I guess I had needed my sleep.
I decided, since I’m constantly a slave to a schedule, to let myself relax instead of rushing to each and every activity that weekend. I did not rush through my quiet time with the Lord. I didn’t care that I was a little late to breakfast and that I couldn’t find a seat. I made new friends, and I had some incredible conversations with people I wouldn’t have talked to if I was on time. Whatever I chose to do during the weekend was more meaningful; instead of attending workshops and meetings because I had to, I attended them because I knew God wanted to show me something through them.
Trusting in God’s timing shows your confidence in him, which ultimately shows your confidence in what He says about you.
While it is tempting to rush through life, God calls us to trust Him with every step. Someone told me this weekend that the way in the right direction always involves the first step. We get so focused on the steps that follow that we feel too numb to take the first step. All it takes to get us started is to rely on God for that one step, and then the next step, and then the next. One step at a time.
And step by step, God will lead us.
You don’t have to have it all figured out. You don’t have to choose right now. You don’t have to be a slave to your schedule or to others’ expectations of you.
During these next few weeks, I’m going to through rush out the window. I can’t ignore the tasks that God has allowed me to do, and the activities that God has provided for me to participate in, but I can develop an attitude of rest that reminds me who is really in control. I’m not in control. My activities are not in control. My blog readers are not in control. My potential literary agents/publishers are not in control.
Ultimately, God is in control, and I rest confidently in the fact that He will guide me in this next step, and every next step to follow.