Monday, May 20, 2013

When God Says "NO"

I've been given some options lately that I haven't known what to do with.  These are potential opportunities that would be incredible--and could move me into the place where God wants me.  It's exciting to even THINK about the options in front of me... And TERRIFYING, as well!

The scary part for me isn't so much the idea of change--I LOVE change, and would thrive on constant change, if possible.  The scary part of me is that we live our life of faith by just that--FAITH.  It means that the decisions I make in my life are not guaranteed.  I do the best I can with the understanding that I have and then leave the rest up to God.

And for a reformed control freak - that's HARD.

So God gave me a challenge.  And if God gives you a challenge, you'd better do it.

My challenge was to document the major decisions in my adult life, and to examine how I came to make the decisions I made.

The list began:
Going to North Central
Quitting my job
Facilitating Freedom Session for a second year

On and on I wrote about how God communicated with me.  And two things became clear:
1) For all of these decisions, I KNEW.  Something deep in my gut told me what the right decision was, and I knew that I had to follow it--no matter what other people said or did.  Some of them happened instantaneously (like Haiti--I knew the night I was asked to go, even though I didn't admit it for a few days).  Others took years (like quitting my job--I'd wanted to for a long time, but it wasn't until last fall that I was released to do so).  But no matter how long it took to get to the point of knowing, I knew.  And the end result is that my life was changed--AND the lives of the people I interact with.

2) Knowing the answer often meant knowing what NOT to do more than what TO do.  Last year, I wasn't totally sure that I wanted to facilitate Freedom Session again.  I didn't have a clear answer of whether I should or should not be a facilitator for awhile.  Then Ken, the founder of Freedom Session, came to our church to preach--and I realized what life would be if I did NOT facilitate... and recognized that as disobedience.  I've had multiple decisions like that--where DISOBEDIENCE was sometimes easier to see than OBEDIENCE.

So what does that mean for me right now?
I get to pray some more.  A LOT more.  And it's encouraging.  Because it means that if I'm open to hear when God is saying "YES" or "NO," I will hear.  I don't have to push for a decision.  I don't have to force it.  God will clearly say, "Yes, do this," in His way.

It just may sound (to me) a lot like, "NO-you can't do that anymore."


Jenni said...

I don't totally understand the 2nd part (I didn't follow the 2nd explanation, maybe because I'm unfamiliar with Freedom Session), but I love that you took an historical look at big decisions and how you made them. That would totally help to calm the mind regarding whether or not God will lead you. Apparently He will! :)

Emily said...

Fixed it, Jenni!!!