It looks like we're facing another set back on our road to Bear Paw. I have to admit the obstacles are getting a little old. When I was sharing with someone that our move date is tentatively June 7th but, due to circumstances, we might have to change that, their response was to wonder if maybe it wasn't God's plan for us to buy the camp. I answered that the door wasn't shut and we'd face this challenge head on just like the other challenges we've faced. Those words, asking such an obvious question, unintentionally sliced doubt to the core of my heart. How can I know for sure if this is God's will? My first thought was of the Israelites wandering 40 years in the desert as they waited to enter the promised land. I didn't like that example because it was due to the fact that they turned their hearts from God and set up idols that they had to wait so long. I don't think we have any obvious idols we're depending on to save us. I'll keep an open mind and examine that thought more.
Next, I thought of Abraham and Sarah, the barren couple who God had promised he would make the father of many nations. In other words, give them lots of descendants, which means children! They waited and waited for their promise to be fulfilled, getting older and less fertile each month and year that passed. Abraham is known for his great faith but it took some training for that faith to grow to the level God desired it to be. Abraham failed many times; taking matters into his own hands, lying to protect his own tail feathers, following advice that was contrary to God's plan (albeit from his wife whom I'm sure was normally a great source of wisdom!). When I was sharing all this with Andrew he said, "Abraham should have stayed focused. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again."
Seriously, how many months went by where they wondered, "Is this the month?" How many times was Sarah a few days late and starting to get excited, only to be disappointed again. That had to be difficult, yet still they had God's promise, regardless of how things looked to the outside world.
Why do I keep questioning God when he's confirmed to me that he does have a plan and will reveal it bit by bit? If you've followed my blog, you'll notice an amazing thing. Each time I have a day of confirmation, blessing, or complete trust, it is followed, almost immediately, by a day of testing, trial, and confusion. A time where all the earthly "signs" are stripped away and I'm left with the question, "Do you trust me?" My faith is so weak, but each time I say, "Yes, Lord," no matter if it's whispered, I am met with great strength and peace. Through these ups and downs it's become almost a habit to say "Yes" to God. Each time he's met me, each time I'm blessed. That is what I call training! I'm being transformed. This lump of clay, in the potter's hands, may someday be a useful bowl or vase or mug.
If you've never said "Yes" to Jesus, I want to encourage you to trust him with your life. He created you, he loves you, he died for you, paying the price for your sin. Say, "Yes" to Jesus. If you've accepted God's grace already I want to encourage you to let him lead you. When trials come allow him to mold you through the process. Open your eyes to where God is moving and join him.
"Jesus, thank you for dying for me. I am imperfect, unable to enter heaven because of my sin. Thank you for paying the debt for my sin with your own life, and giving me eternal life in heaven and relationship with you right now. Use me for your glory. Grow me into who you designed me to be. Help me to stay on the potter's wheel even when it's spinning fast, you're pressing hard, or I'm being stretched. I want to be a useful vessel."