Those of you who have followed my blog since it started last May will know that I have battled with a sense of being without a direction (or possibly, in my heart of hearts, with a direction but afraid to take it / not knowing if God was in it.)
Well that desert-period in my life seems to have come to an end, with a job-offer back in the career of teaching, for which I trained 16 years ago now. It’s not that I’ve been doing nothing (honestly!): teaching for four years; then time at home raising my two lovely daughters with the help of my equally lovely husband; then back into a bit of teaching; more time at home; then special needs, latterly back in my subject area, English, and back with the big kids instead of the small ones! But the last few years I’ve felt that there was more out there for me, even if I was afraid to embrace it, and the right opportunity / direction didn’t seem to be presenting itself.
At the start of January, I led a service in one of my local churches, talking about the road ahead in 2014 and God being with us in it (my old favourite Isaiah 43: 1-4 came up – in The Message version of the Bible!), as I talked about the unexpected twists and turns of life, it’s uphill stretches as well as that bend in the road that you can’t quite see around!
1-4 But now, God’s Message,
the God who made you in the first place, Jacob,
the One who got you started, Israel:
“Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you.
I’ve called your name. You’re mine.
When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.
When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you’re between a rock and a hard place,
it won’t be a dead end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
The Holy of Israel, your Savior.
I paid a huge price for you:
all of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in!
That’s how much you mean to me!
That’s how much I love you!
I’d sell off the whole world to get you back,
trade the creation just for you.
And they’re not just empty words. I do believe it – when I write or talk, I am honestly writing or talking to myself as much as anyone else!
And this was so evident this week when I went for my interview – God being in it even though it was scary (I hate interviews!), being in my answers to questions, in the offer they put to me. Before the day of the interview, I had been panicking and was given this verse by a friend: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11 – NIV) – and she was right, of course. God isn’t out there to get me, but to put me in the place that he wants me, that will use the skills He’s given me. He made me so He knows what I can do, where I should be, better even than I do.
Which doesn’t mean that change isn’t somewhat daunting (as someone with some Aspergers’ traits, I can tell you, it is!) I do sometimes feel something like Moses in Exodus 4, somewhat unprepared for the task ahead and trying to talk God out of it! Or like Joshua or Isaiah, wondering if I can do what God has got in store for me.
But I know that God knows what He’s doing!
And that He will be with me in my next step, as He will be with you in yours.
Bible verses come from version as stated.
Picture Credits: Pic. 1 – http://www.turnbacktogod.com/psalm-23-explained-beautifully/; Pic. 2 – http://www.thechristiangift.com/newsletters/category/scripture-2/page/2/; Pic 3: http://leprofesseur.tripod.com/Footprints.html