"Sometimes the crossroads define us and we are not meant to find our way back, but find the new path that intersects at the crossroads. Finding our way back isn't an option when God has used our past to define our future." ~Me :-)
I wrote this as a response to a post when someone was suggesting that we turn around if we get off track and find our way back and all will be well. I have learned that when we are desiring to be used by God for His purpose(s) we will never go back to where we came from. While the pain is felt at every level of our life and within every fiber of our being, the focus that is removed from our life is self. After all...it is His purpose even if we are fueled by it and excited for it. Even though we are all struggling to remain intact in the midst of life's twists and turns, it is in the place that we abandon our "self" that we find our heart's desire. This is accomplished with less reisistance and pain for some but there certainly is a common thread that goes along with determination and that is persistance. Persistance keeps us on track until we meet our goals, but when God interrupts us in our quest to accomplish our "self-ish" goals we spend the first portion of His blatant agenda preserving self until we realize He is going to have His way and there is nothing we can do to change that other than surrender to the process. Our prayer then becomes: let me learn every lesson You desire to teach me so that I do not have to stay here any longer than necessary. While the discomfort can be disturbing...as interruptions are...the ability to bring comfort to others begins to come out as we are squeezed. We begin to see others challenges from a perspective of empathy rather than apathy. We realize that there are many types of personalities that we are confronted with each day and to truly lead effectively we must have patience and understanding for those that do not look at life through the same lenses. Let's face it, the "lenses" each of us has are there as a result of our life's experiences. How we perceive, interpret, and handle life is a direct result of what we learned through our fears and reactions to them and therefore expect as an outcome to our response. When our response no longer accomplishes our goals, we shift gears. When the shift doesn't produce the desired result (sometimes repeatedly) we will eventually get to a place where we realize God is going to have His way and no amount of action or reaction by us will change that.
When we truly let go, we become free. Free from the determination to have our way and free from the burdens that go along with having our own way. We trust He knows best and His will is best. When we live by His paradigm, we also realize there is much more life to be lived because He controls and allows everything for His glory and we, as His children were created to glorify Him. When we can understand that reality, our fears shift toward excitement. How much more effective will we then be when we release the fear of holding on and realize that the ONLY ONE who can gives us the absolute best life has to offer, and desires to do just that, is THE ONE in control?!! I have struggled with this myself and it hasn't been until I stubbornly dug in and realized God digs in even more, not to harm me or my "self" but to help me find my true self that is truly devoted to His call and cannot rest until that call is realized that I have begun letting go. I certainly see myself within it, but it is not the same restless self. It is the self that knows, the one that is connected to His spirit, that He will make it happen if I just remove myself from the determination to "make it happen".
In Psalm 37:4 the Psalmist said “Delight yourselves in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” If we are passionate about God, we can trust our passions. It is when we are determined to have our way, that His way cannot be realized. We are held back. We are limited. Following God knows no limits. Even though I have been a slow learner, I feel I am now on the fast track and my head space has advanced despite my physical place. I can tell you as one who feared, there is nothing to fear. The anticipation of the goal realized has taken on a new excitement. There is also a fresh assurance. We do not have to fear that our heart's desire is in contrast to God's heart. Through a surrendered life comes a sense of urgency for your purpose. Under these circumstances, that purpose will be in direct alignment with His heart and therefore it is trustworthy. You will feel a freedom as you release yourself and let Him control the steps He has already ordained. The path is different for each of us, but the destination is the same: defined self, redefined mission, purpose-filled destination. Abandon yourself to the process and do not look back...the crossroads are right in front of you...take the step and feel the freedom in your soul. It may not look like you expected, but what you expected never looked so good!