Chasing God's will
Last night I dreamt I had a flight to Algeria (I know, Algeria of all places). I started researching about my assignment (I was going on a writing job), then I packed and couldn't just get the right things to pack or pack fast enough. Finally when I was just about to head to the airport I remembered it's winter over there and I needed to pack warm coats and boots. I barely had two hours to my check in and I was frustrated trying to decide what to carry and where to fit it. My rider to the airport disappeared as I searched for shoes and when I was finally walking to the airport, I met my son along the way and he was crying for me and I grabbed him and made the dash to JKIA. But then we got lost and couldn't find the entrance to the airport. Next thing I woke up.
I have had similar dreams in the past few years - about barely making a flight, or losing my passport or ticket, or finally getting into the plane and the flight still aborts or landing in the middle of somewhere and we can't leave the airport. And these dreams are so vivid I remember every detail when I awake. (Well I also dream a lot about being in a faulty office elevator or getting lost in an office maze). Google psychologists say I'm frustrated with things in my day life and feel my life is out of my control.
You bet! Of course I feel off the course and not able to do much about it. I wish I had Ksh5 million in cash today. I think I should be halfway through a PhD but I do not even know what I want to study or research. I wish I had an influential name in professional circles. I wish my dream hustle was up and thriving. I wish I had a hacienda. I had hoped to traverse Europe in 2020... And I feel like my life as it is right now is not delivering on these fronts and might not in the short term, at least. If you ask me what I am doing with my life right now, it is that I am raising my children, loving my husband, facilitating a Bible study group and feeling like I'm flopping at all these.
As a planner and early starter, I hate not having it all figured out. And I'm scared that this might be it - that there may be no academic accolades or books to write or businesses to run... just this - making breakfasts, folding clothes, counterchecking for Pg-rated TV content before kids consume it. I know, fear speaking. Sarah laughing. Gideon hiding.
What troubles me is the contentment in this - the cranky toddler, the failed homeschooling, the never quite clean floors, always overflowing laundry hamper, always rushing around with kids in tow. I was not taught that it is Okey to be okay with this. I was not showed how to be okay with this. So being okay with it makes me feel - ambitionless, soft, lazy, out of touch with my potential and dreams, underachieving. A part of me can't quite believe that this is where God would lead. And not many people believe it either.
I realise every time it has been time for a new season, I've felt it, I have known it, I have felt compelled to move. God does guide. His will is not hidden. He completes what He begins. He doesn't abandon us on the highway or in the wilderness.
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.Isaiah 30:21
The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.Isaiah 58:11
So, if I really believe God guides and directs, it means he's led me here. It means I'm where I'm needed today. If he needs me in a PhD class tomorrow he will guide me there. If I need a hacienda, God will provide. He can sell some of those cattle on a thousand hills, as if he needs to. Today I'm in my kitchen with a cranky toddler who refuses to stop breastfeeding and an empty jar of marmalade.
I am reminded that this too is God's job, this too is divine assignment. "Children are not a distraction from more important work. They are the most important work.” – Dr. John Trainer
I read somewhere: "The Lord wants you in His will even more than you want to be. So don’t let figuring out His will become an idol. Pursue the Lord and trust Him to keep you in His path.”
God's will is not out there. It's in the here and now. It's in the season I'm in today. It's bringing God glory where I am today. It's faithfulness and fruitfulness and sanctification and being transformed and renewed where I am today. It's the faith walk today, right here right now. And today I'm not the owner of a publisher or a PhD or a farmer or a perfect size 10. Today I'm mostly mummy and wife and daughter and friend, by God's grace. I have everything I need. My heart's at rest.
The Lord is my shepherd... He lets me rest in fields of green grass, and leads me to quiet pools of fresh water. He leads me in paths of righteousness for His name's sake. He leadeth me, oh blessed thought... Whatever I do, wherever I be, still tis God's hands that leadeth me.
My assignment today is not glamorous but it is what it is- these children and this husband, this home, this family, these friends. That's my purpose today. This is me seeking the kingdom.
Which reminds me of a Kinyarwanda song I've been listening to this new year that scares me stupid, Nkoresha by James and Daniella. (By the way there's great live worship by Rwandese musicians). The song says that "Not my plans but your plans God. That it's a tragedy to succeed in the wrong assignment." God give me the wisdom and grace to be content in your plans even when they underwhelm me.