There’s a little kid song I remember singing once about following Jesus wherever he calls. As a young child I paid no heed to the actual meaning of that song – of course I would go wherever Jesus called me. But as I’ve gotten older I’ve realized that saying you will go wherever you’re called is not for the weak of heart. When I look back on my life so far I can see where I dug my heels in so hard trying not to go where I was called there are practically ruts along the way. Times such as my senior year of high school when I swore I would never ever go to Texas Tech and even after I committed after exhausting every other option I still swore it was not where I was supposed to go to college. And yet I stand on the other side of it and see that’s where I was supposed to go the entire time, I just closed myself off to listening to God’s will thinking that my own will was stronger. And yet it was not nor will it ever be.
I’ve always had a hard time following God’s will over my own. Sometimes I feel like Samuel, sleeping in the temple only to be awoken by God calling his name. It takes Samuel three times before he understands that it is God calling his name, not someone else around him. Once he finally listens he begins to see the wonderful plans God has for him. I am like Samuel in many ways. I know that there is a plan out there that is great than I am but yet I misinterpret where I am supposed to be. I fail and yet God still patiently calls again to me, waiting for me to answer him. I may not yet know what my wonderful plan is but I feel that I answered God’s current plan for me by preparing to go to India to care for previously abandoned children with special needs. I spent several nights wrestling with God, trying to talk myself out of going, but ultimately, like Samuel, I finally answered Here I am. And when I finally listened to God’s call I finally felt everything falling into place. The other week I was flipping though my journal to find something I knew I had written down a while ago. While skimming the pages I began to realize that God had been gently prodding my heart throughout my college years, getting me ready for the next step after college. His call had not come out of nowhere, it had been there all along.
Last week my friend Mary and I were talking about discernment. We lead a freshmen bible study and wanted to introduce the idea to our freshmen to plant seeds that would hopefully someday bloom. As we sat in the coffee shop planning how we would guide the discussion we both realized we prayed similar prayers in our own discernment journeys. We both prayed for the next step of our journey to be illuminated. Not the whole road, just the next stone in the road. This is a prayer I often find I have to remind myself of. Being 6 weeks away from going to India I find myself wanted the next couple of steps to be illuminated. I want to know how long I will stay, if I will be a foster mom, what children I will foster, if I will like it. But that’s not the point of discernment. No matter how hard I pray I will never know what the rest of my life will look like. Only God knows and he plays those cards pretty close. But he has assured me that he will illuminate the next step when the time is right.
So I put aside my worries, my questions, my uncertainties and focus instead on living in the current step in my journey I’m on. I focus on the time I get to spend with my Steven before I leave him. I focus on learning as much as I can about pediatric therapy in my current job so I can help create a therapeutic environment for the kids at SCH. I focus on spending as much time as I can with the people who love and support me before I go to India. I choose joy no matter what step God illuminates next. I put my faith in God’s plan for my future and look forward to whatever journey he takes me on.
Would you considering praying for me as I begin the next step in my journey? It would mean the world to me. If you feel called to give financially here is a Paypal link. I owe so much to everyone who has supported me along this journey so far!