Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. Proverbs 3:5-7
I’m learning to trust. Wholeheartedly. Even when it doesn’t make sense. Recently, I’ve found myself smack dab in the middle of transformation. Growing inwardly, yet not necessarily moving forward or backwards. Just different. I’m simply changing. God is removing old habits and creating new ones. He’s altering my thought patterns and challenging my routines. He’s destroying fear and anxiety and exchanging them with peace. It’s refreshingly fresh. Yes, it’s new, but it’s only just begun.
I’m living with my family for the summer, but I’m fairly familiar with the area. Last week, I opted out of going to the gym and decided to run through the neighborhood for a little more scenery than the typical treadmill. In order to get a good run in, I usually run as far and fast as I can. This way, I have no choice but to finish the distance back. Headphones in, with Cory Asbury and Rick Peno blasting, I started my day right. About forty-five minutes in, I realized I had lost track of time and ended up a few miles from my house. I was running full force in a random direction when out of no where, it started to rain. This wasn’t your typical cute little downpour either. It was the tropical storm kind. The clouds rolled in, there was thunder and lightning and I panicked. I couldn’t see where I was going, and I couldn’t remember where I had been. I had no idea where I was.
So here I was, drenched from head to toe, in hot pink shorts and a yellow tank top. Running nearly blind, in an area which I no longer recognized, doing my best to keep my phone dry. A pathetic sight I’m sure. A few cars stopped out of pity and tried to lend a helping hand, but “stranger danger” was faithfully engraved in my head and kindly reminded me to steer clear. I did eventually find my way home, and thankfully, I didn’t fall on my face in the process.
This somewhat comical experience has reminded me of a few things. Like it says in Proverbs– I can’t be wise in my own eyes. You see, the very environment I knew to be familiar, instantaneously changed and seemed to be entirely different. The tools I formerly leaned on for guidance failed me– miserably. And the atmosphere changed, dramatically. It all happened in one quick motion, and just like that, all confidence in myself was obliterated. I didn’t lack determination; that I had. What I lacked was direction.
Sometimes, it takes an engine failure to realize just how much we’ve relied on a spark plug. You never really think about what you’ve leaned on until it crumbles. It’s funny really. The old song “you never know what you’ve got til’ its gone” is fairly relative. It always seems to be the little things that fight to ruin my day.Whenever I get a papercut (I seem to get these often at work) I’m always shocked at how suddenly aware I am of my pinky. I never really notice it unless it’s injured. In one way or another, everyone and everything will eventually fail us. But we decide how much the gravity of the failure will affect us. It’s all relative to how closely we’ve trusted or depended on them.
The storms of life test our vision. They reveal to us what we’ve truly set our eyes on. They show us who our heart has clung to. Maybe God allows people, circumstances, or environments to fail us so that we will recognize how reliant on them we truly are. He desires for us to take our eyes off of the counterfeit, remove all false security, and trust in Him. Only Him, above everyone and anything else. Without Him we are running through the storms of life blind without direction. This is no way to live.
So, if you find yourself in a panic, ask yourself; why am I frazzled? He is incapable of stress, anxiety, fear and failure. He is stable. Through the madness, chaos, and confusion. He will not be shaken. Check your eyes– What are they focused on?