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Saturday, June 10, 2017

Strength Training

Thy will be done. You know the bigger picture. You know whether this is part of your plans for me or not. You also know the stories of all the other people this might impact and whether or not it is a part of helping accomplish your plan for them. Thy will be done.

I was surprised to see an unexpected potential opportunity. So much about it seemed so perfect. It was something that I had been longing for, yet it did not seem like it would be possible any time soon or perhaps ever. Then the chance arose. I was in awe with how God had lined up different aspects with an element of surprise if it were to work out.

I thought back to how a part of the book Desiderata spoke to my heart when I read it a couple of years before, focusing on how our lives can have interesting twists and each of our previous experiences can position us well for where God is leading us in ways we never could have imagined. This opportunity felt like it was going to be another piece to my story, something that would better position me to fulfill God's plans for me. 

Nonetheless, I knew that even though it felt perfect, it might not end up being part of my plan. While my excitement built, I knew I should be patient and not get too excited until I knew one way or another. But of course, there I was dreaming and mapping out a detailed multi-year plan mixed with reflecting on how I wanted to respond if it did not work out. 

Thy will be done. You know whether this will help me or pull me away from being better positioned to accomplish your plans for me. If this is not part of your plans for me, even if I am the only one who expressed interest in it, guide those making the decisions to hesitate from offering it to me. Let them tell me no and turn down the opportunity. Or, if it is offered to someone else, let me be happy for the other person. Let me accept. Thy will be done. 

A couple of days ago the decision came. Even though I was planning on waiting patiently for things to unfold when and as they naturally would, I was impatient. I wanted to know whether there was a reason to keep hoping or whether the process had already moved forward with someone else. As I read the word "sorry" in the text response, the sad emotions came even though I wanted to fully accept whichever answer came as God's will and His ability to work all things for the good of all involved. 

Even though I proactively focused on approach, I realized that would not keep me from feeling a sense of loss even though I knew it meant the closing door must have been for the better. It did however give me a chance to feel the range of emotions that come with a disappointment and all the what if questions but then conscientiously choose to turn it all back to God and to pray in gratitude for being able to trust that it was not part of my plan for now, for others who would take part in the opportunity and the many lives they would impact as a result, for the people who inspired by the Year of Mercy had decided to offer this generous opportunity to begin with... 

I need to delete the folder with all my plans, I thought. But, what if something doesn't work out with the original plan and I end up being able to do it after all? Maybe I should keep it. 

No, letting go has been an area of growth for you. Delete the file. Let go. Intentionally remember to pray for others at strategic times, and in the face of unplanned reminders, pray. Trust and let go.

Thy will be done. Thank you for this opportunity to strengthen me, for helping me to desire a certain response if faced with disappointment and then being able to make a conscious decision to follow through. Thank you for helping build my excitement so that I could feel a loss but then still be able to respond with trust and confidence in you. Thank you for providing the contexts and scenarios in order to grow in the ways you would like me to. I know it is all part of my preparation to fulfill what you desire for my life. Thy will be done.

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