Sometimes trust without borders leads you to the middle of the ocean without further instruction.
When 2015 began, I had no idea where it would lead. This quote from Hillsong echoed in my heart as I entered with a lot of prayer and a challenge from one of my professors which led me to attempt reading the entire Bible during the year. Confession: I made it to around May. But it wasn’t exactly from a lack of trying. I had been reading in chronological order rather than book-by-book and I was captivated with the new personal and intricate perspective it gave the first several books of the Old Testament. I wanted to study it more and let it sink in before continuing. Job’s trust took on so much more depth reading it in context of Genesis. The Psalm believed to have been written by Moses was like taking a look at his journal during the struggle as Israel waited to enter into the Promised Land. I could feel Sarah’s fear in daring to hope for a child and I desired Abraham’s radical faith looking at the promises of God as things still hoped for and not yet realized, while fully believing every word would be carried out.
It made me realize that trusting God really should be the default for us now (but it’s definitely not), having all this evidence right in front of us to show who God is and how He works. The very first people to walk this earth couldn’t always see so much of the picture that we can now through God’s Word, yet they are some of the greatest examples of what it looks like to have “trust without borders”. They didn’t trust or follow perfectly, but they stepped out in faith.
The beginning of 2015 hit the ground running with big decisions and seeing God lead in even bigger directions. So I followed, asking for all the limits on my trust to be removed. But circumstances settled right in the middle of the wilderness. A lot of things were started and not many are finished now. There’s still some healing that needs to happen, bold steps that should be taken, disappointments to move on from, achievements to look forward to, hope to hold onto, and an excitement to cultivate in trusting that what God has started He will also finish. The past year has been really intimidating, but so very good – even if not in the moment.
And I’m seeing faith is the next step resulting from the growth that trust brings. We can choose to trust even when things are uncertain, and in this place we discover trust reveals so much more. We find the unquenchable desire to believe He will come through when we call.
2015 was marked by a call to trust while I asked that He would make me willing to go; looking to Him to show me what to do, to give me the words, to open the doors, and to allow the direction to become clear. I want 2016 to be defined by believing He will continue to do what He started. Laying down the questions, setting aside the worry, focusing on what’s right in front of me, and having faith that this is where I’m supposed to be today and it will ultimately lead me to where I’m supposed to be tomorrow. January will hit the ground running again with more big decisions and a continuation of the waiting to see how the decisions I made a long time ago will turn out. More uncertainty. More opportunities to trust and believe.
So my focus for 2016: It is on its way.
I keep coming back to Habakkuk 1 and 2. As Habakkuk brings his “why” questions before the Lord, God faithfully answers. The Lord tells Habakkuk that He is doing something so incomprehensible no one would be able to wrap their mind around it even if it had been spelled out for them. After Habakkuk pours out his heart again to the Lord, he resolves to eagerly watch for the Lord to respond – and God does. He says if what’s to come seems delayed, wait. It hastes even now. It will arrive at exactly the appointed time.
This passage may be in context of God’s judgement through the victory of Israel’s enemies, but the heart of the message is profound and applies to us now. God answers. He is working. What He is doing will not be late.
I have presented my concerns to the Lord, I have waited for His response, and He has answered: He asked me to step out so many times the last 12 months and He isn’t finished yet. Now I am called to believe that what He is doing is on its way. It may not come in the way I expect or be what I would ask for myself, and it probably won’t all happen this year, but He is accomplishing something so much greater than I can comprehend through it all. I can guarantee you that at times my heart will want to forget the part about waiting for it to come. But in those moments I know there will be enough grace for my impatience.
My prayer this year is that He would continually reassure us that He isn’t finished yet. Believe He is working and have faith that He won’t leave you hanging. He has started something great and He hasn’t forgotten. Yes; sometimes trust without borders leads you to the middle of the ocean without further instruction. It feels like you should have turned around or never have left the boat because you can’t see how it will all turn out and where you should go from here. But wait anyway. Watch for it. Believe it’s coming – because it is on its way.