The back story to why I decided to start this new mini series...
Since the beginning of January, I have been boldly stepping out on faith to accept my life as it is now. As I began this adventure I realized I was accepting my current circumstance but was not finding freedom. Through some major external processing, it came to my attention that I can accept what is right in front of me but still hold onto a fake hope that life will go back to how it used to be. After grasping the reality of my heart, a phrase was birthed: New normal. What I was currently accepting was not only the present but a false hope that existed in the future. Therefore, I was not accepting anything but rather being okay with what was going on around me because I knew deep down that it just HAD to go back to the old normal. I couldn't have been more wrong...
It seemed that the more I "accepted" the more life changed. Every false hope began to crumble before me. Feeling even more anxious, I went back to the drawing board. Through a lot of processing, reading, and advice shared, it came to my attention that in order to accept I must let go. What does that even mean? Not going to lie, I was super frustrated and began to form anger within my heart. It's like this journey is never going to end, and quite frankly I want out! However, I discovered that a new journey was forming. It's not that I had not accomplished anything but rather God was calling me forward in my walk with Him. You see, letting go means to fully surrender your entire being (heart, soul, mind) to Him. It is a complete trust in the One who goes before you. The One who exists in the past, present, and future. The One who is WAY smarter than you. In order to surrender and trust fully, I had to get a grip on my pride and begin to acknowledge I was struggling with trusting God despite all the facts I consumed over the years. The new normal begins by receiving a full grasp of God's sovereignty (supreme power or authority). By accepting His sovereignty, I can begin to find freedom from anxiety and my current circumstances.
Let go, let God because He goes before you. Of course, just because I grew up in church my whole life does not mean I know everything (although I think I do). Therefore, I had to begin proving to myself that God really is worth trusting. Which means I had to search for the truth. Where does the truth exist? In scripture, the BIBLE! In order to begin the journey of letting go and letting God let's search for the answers of two questions...Does He really go before us? Is God truly sovereign (a person who has supreme power or authority) and worth trusting?
Question 1: Does He really go before us?
"Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you," Deuteronomy 31:8. Not only does God go before us, meaning He has a firm grasp upon what is to come and controls what the future holds. God also travels with you. Yes, it is a little confusing. Matt Chandler puts it best, "God exists outside of time." I have found in order to allow our minds to truly grasp the presence of God in ALL things, it is okay to admit we don't understand. I know this sounds crazy.... but.... if we ask the Lord to make our hearts okay with what we don't understand He can yearn our hearts to understanding or God allows our hearts to be at peace regardless of our head knowledge.
"Who can command things to happen without the Lord's permission," Lamentations 3:37. Our good is constantly in the forefront of God's mind. There is nothing that can happen to us that He has not already put into place, seen, or been apart of. God is currently in the future telling the world what it can/cannot do to you. How reassuring is that? Hard to grasp at times...YET so comforting!
Question 2: Is God truly sovereign (a person who has supreme power or authority) and worth trusting?
"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you," Jeremiah 29:11-12. Now I know this verse can be way over used and way over done. I want to point out something most people don't. "I will listen." Now the majority of people are not good listeners. It is only a select few I even choose to talk to because most people just don't care. Therefore, when God point blank says that He WILL listen, He is volunteering to not only listen but to make appointed time for just you and Him! How can someone like that not be trust worthy. Of course, this verse also states that God is in complete control. He has a plan for us, and personally, I LOVE planning. Although, mine aren't always kept. God's plans? ALWAYS KEPT!
"What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open," Revelation 3:7b. I feel this is a great, easy way to establish God's true sovereignty. Anyone who can forever keep a door/drawer/book closed or open permanently seems pretty powerful and in control to me. I mean even the most powerful of safes and locks can be opened by the craftiest of people. God's locks/safes? No way! He has authority over those locks/safes (His children, us) and that's that.
Paul writes, "That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day," 2 Timothy 1:12. Paul is very clear that he is suffering. Many people in the Bible suffered. I believe they were all examples of how we are to suffer as well. Through the suffering Paul was enduring within the book of Timothy (being in jail and mistreated) He still felt compelled to share with his apprentice (Timothy) that despite it all God was trust worthy. Paul was certain of God's authority over his life. Paul was also very clear that he entrusted God with "that day." Therefore, it is a constant process of letting go and letting God everyday. We are human, we are broken, and we need reminded DAILY when it comes to God's sovereignty, control, and ultimate say over our lives.