I wish I could just let you read my journal from the past few months. The pain, the timing, the oh-so-perfect alignment, and the now-evident irony.
You might’ve gotten a feel of it from my posts from this summer… But since April, I’ve been full of groaning. Groaning that might not have manifested itself in the natural but was more than felt by my spirit in the unseen. This feeling of longing… that if I have to wait any longer for something to change, I just might die.
It was this terrible battle inside of me.
I wanted to quit. To give up hoping. Abandon ship.
But I also knew that if I stopped hoping, I would die.
I had to hold on to hope; to hold on to the unseen belief that He is trustworthy and good. Because without it, I would be dead where I stood.
I say “dead” like it would’ve really happened because that’s how it felt. The hoping was painful but the quitting was sure to be even more so.
There was nothing I could see to make me believe He was moving – nothing I could even feel to make me believe He was actually listening to the painful groaning of my anxious heart. Peace came in waves. When one revelation of hope washed over me, it was soon followed by doubts and lies that swarmed me like bees.
In the morning, I could wake up fine. But by 3 pm, I would be overwhelmed with everything that needed to be taken care of that I had absolutely no control over.
I couldn’t put my hand to anything. Nothing I did could bring about forward motion.
I was forced to be still.
To move when He said move, but mostly to be still. To press in when He said press in, but mostly… to be still.
But He was listening.
When I didn’t see it or feel it, He was listening.
He was behind the scenes, silently orchestrating every little detail.
As I groaned, He held me, not saying a word but allowing me to dig deep into the truth of who He really was.
I dug for answers. I dug for revelation. I dug for truth – something to hold on to.
He mended my heart. He brought up places of pain, hurt, neglect, and doubt. Every inch of them, He brought to light. I tried to not feel, but He pressed in. Trust me, He begged. Hope in me, He reminded. My thoughts are not your thoughts. Nor are my ways your ways. Trust for the fulfillment.
“But why?” I wanted to, and often did, scream at Him. “God, what is the purpose of hope?”
“Hope keeps your heart alive. It keeps it healthy… beating… thriving. It allows you to see things that haven’t happened yet. It allows you to laugh through pain. It supplies oxygen to your lungs. It keeps you breathing. You must hope in my Goodness.”
So I chose to believe for provision, for fulfillment, for answers to promises. That I wouldn’t be numb forever. I wouldn’t be stuck in the same thought patterns forever. That the season WOULD shift.
I just had to wait.
He loved me in the middle of my mess and impatience. He loved me despite my doubts that He did. When I told Him that there wasn’t any way He really loved me, He never left… He just made Himself even more near… never angered or frustrated. Always loving.
And then just like that, one day, everything shifts.
You feel it. Something in your bones says “Today is the day that everything changes. Today’s the day that we’re done with that old season and we’re walking into a new one.”
For me, it started with a new house.
A house that has almost every minor detail I’ve secretly wanted. A house that has enough room for hosting people. A house that I have come alive decorating and creating in already. A house God promised I would have when I moved to Raleigh… I just had to wait a year for it.
It was then followed by a table.
A table that was totally free. A table that should’ve cost a month’s rent. A table that can comfortably seat 8. A table that makes my heart flutter with dreams of dinner parties that fill people, body and soul. A table that is a symbol of a dream of God in my heart and this is only the beginning of the fulfillment.
And then there’s this last part.
How when I left California, I felt like God had said “Let’s go home and buy you a car.” How after that, I just chuckled and said, “Well okay. This should be good because I have $350.” But this time, there was no doubt that followed. I knew it was going to happen, despite the facts. So I came home and told a few people “This week, I’m buying a car.”
I asked God for specifics.
He mentioned a silver 2009 Nissan Versa with 110,000 miles on it. And something about $3000.
Last Sunday, I texted a friend to pray for provision for a car. This is the same friend who prayed for me to get a job this time last year, and two days later I did. The guy has serious favor for asking for big things. So he prayed.
On Monday, I came home with one of my friends to my roommate in the kitchen. We started talking and then I heard what sounds like running coming from the other side of the house. In seconds, about 12 of my friends swarmed my living room, cheering and yelling! Confused, I start laughing and said “What’s going on?!” They told me that we were having a surprise encouragement night for me (!!!) and then a worship night. I was so overwhelmed. Surprises are one of my love languages but it is extremely hard to surprise me. Apparently not as hard as I thought though, because I had absolutely no clue this was happening.
So they each took turns encouraging me. My heart felt like lava was being poured in it. Refreshment washed over me and I was totally undone with love.
My roommate ended the encouragement time by hanging me a gift bag with an envelope inside. I opened it to find a stack of 100-dollar-bills and started bawling. “That’s a little over $2500 we raised for a car.”
The tears could not stop flowing as I covered my mouth and looked around the room of my friends, cheering and clapping.
He had heard.
This whole time, when I had doubted that He had heard, He was actually rallying the troops. He had been organizing a battle plan all along. He had been moving on my behalf when I couldn’t see it.
This weekend, with the money my friends spent a month and half raising for me, I’m going to be able to put down exactly $3000 on a 2009 silver Nissan Versa that has about 110,000 miles on it.
He’s a God of breakthrough. He’s a God of fulfillment. He finishes what He starts.