I need to share from my heart in order to process and tell what God has done in me lately. And this is mainly for myself and for the benefit of those who have been longtime readers of this blog. This is a for real “Beauty of Progress” testimony. 🙂 So let’s testify . . .
We’ve lived in the States for 5.5 years now, and it has been the hardest years of my life. I’ve fought the whole working mommy thing, fought against my husband working two jobs, fought against our claustrophobic little house, and have wondered why? Why can’t we quit the stinkin’ cleaning jobs?! Why can’t I stay at home with my kids?! Why is Mark not writing full time?! Why am I not working with people?! And why are we living where we live?!?! (extra emphasis on that one) And about 2 years or so ago, I stopped asking why. I determined to make my grass greener. I determined to stop looking at anyone else or any place else and just find the good in my life. I determined to be an optimist, glass half-full, put some joy in my life type of girl.
And it hasn’t been easy. My husband has been my faithful companion on this journey, and he can tell you it hasn’t been easy. But praise the Lord, hallelujah, God keeps moving me forward. He never leaves us stuck someplace, but we do have to take His help if we want to get unstuck.
So as I shared a few posts back, we have been offered the chance to move, offered an opportunity that would make my heart so happy. We could leave this little town!! And as I’ve prayed and prayed about it, all I’ve received is take it one step at a time and make the most of today. Doors will open as you faithfully walk through today. Truthfully, that’s kind of a very non-exciting answer to me. I wanted a yes or a no. I am a detail lady; give me some details please! But no. I’m getting a lot of general answers and a lot of step by step direction. In other words, slow it down, and do this first. That’s very much my husband’s style, but not mine. I’m a dive into the deep end, almost drown, and then start swimming gal. I am not a patiently take one job at a time, finish it, then take the next job, and proceed that way. So over the past several weeks, I’ve felt like I’m in this very weird holding pattern. I see others moving, but we’re holding. I see these things happening around us, but we’re still holding.
And in the meantime, we have started to take on the remodeling/preparing to sell our house + get out debt phase of life that we know we need to do. So last weekend, we went out and bought what we needed to start the bathroom. Then found out that the bathroom floor requires a lot more than what we had previously known. Our budget has no room for hiring someone to do what’s needed, so our only option is to choose new flooring. And we’re back to holding . . . and I’m back to Lord, why?
So saying all of that to say this – last night, after everyone was sleeping soundly, I sat on the couch to do my devotional reading and prayer time. And I read something that has really stuck with me. It was saying that God waits on us to act; He waits on our faith, specifically faith that is based on His Word. He gets really excited, happy, joyful when we step out and increase our faith level and hold onto a promise from His Word. That pleases Him. Yet a lot of the time, we sit and wait for a lightning bolt from heaven to show us that He’s going to give us a miracle, and really, He’s waiting on us to grab hold of His Word. Our faith sets Him in motion.
(I’m not transitioning or relaying all of this as well as I see it in my head, so bear with me.)
I can flat out tell you that 5 years ago I had very little understanding of what faith truly is. I had probably reached my ceiling as far as what I was able to believe for or put myself out there for. I was too fearful; too afraid of disappointment, too afraid that my dreams wouldn’t come true, too into watching others move forward while I sat still. As I look back now and I see how hard the past 5 years have been, I also see so much fruit coming out of it. I see a different Micah. I see a new faith level that I’ve never experienced before. I’ve never been full of hope or expectation; I’ve never wanted to put myself out there in faith for GOOD things. Yet today, I have a rising expectation, a hope, a conscious excitement in me that says there is so much to be joyful about TODAY. Yes, it’s not perfect; we have ongoing trials. But we also have a lot of faith that those trials will be worked through.
And at the same time, I’m realizing that I’ve also never been as surrendered as I am now. If God calls us to stay in this little town for the rest of our lives, to stay in our tiny house, and to work at our jobs until we’re in our 50s, then so be it. I will remodel my house until I love it. I will enjoy our giant backyard and turn it into a vegetable/fruit/flower playground for our kids. I will find a way to serve the people in my town, and I will be a working mom until our debt is paid off. And if He we get to move to a dream place where we get to do exactly what we’ve always wanted to do, then God will get us there. Either way though, good things are ahead. I can grow green grass wherever I live, and my glass is not half full. IT IS FULL – full of joy, life, peace, and contentment. I am in a relationship with Jesus, the Lover of my Soul. I have a mate who is the best man for me as he loves God, loves me, and loves our kids. And I have three beautiful children who will grow up to be lovers of God and of people. That is what matters, and that is the beauty in my life.
So maybe it’s not so much a holding pattern as a just continue as you are pattern? I don’t know, but I’m very excited to be alive, to be moving forward, and to be making progress. I’m excited to have a God who doesn’t leave us in the mud, but He desires for us to know Him and love Him. He desires to shower us with good things, and I’m so enjoying the shower.
And lastly, I realize that the answer to all of my why questions is this: refinement and faithfulness. If I will allow myself to be refined, then He can do a lot more with my life. A flexible, growing, teachable person is a lot more usable and pliable than one who has never had to bend or stretch or grow. A faith-filled person will also do a lot more for the Kingdom than a negative, afraid to hope type person. If God can get me to believe Him and trust Him, He can have room to do so much in my life. And at the same time, if we can be faithful do cleaning jobs every single weekend for 5.5 years, we can be faithful to do a whole lot more. If we can choose to work and be faithful stewards to pay off debt, we can be trusted with our time and money. If I can choose to be happy where I am, to plant, to bloom, and to bear fruit, I can be faithful to do the same no matter where I am. God honors faithfulness. He honors obedience. He gives favor to those who put their hand to the plow. Favor is on us and more favor is coming to us. I know that deep down in my soul. It doesn’t matter what others do, what they have, where they go; what matters is between us and Him. Faithfulness to do what He has put in my hand is what matters. That is the why.