Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Trust Zone

I find it fascinating, these currents that move through the oceans.  In all the wild expanse of the untamed sea, there are passageways.  As the last two weeks dipped and swelled with monumental waves, God led me to a channel, a pathway of faith.

Though I could not see, I simply placed one foot in front of the other, trusting that He would take care of what concerned me.

In the midst of my helplessness I became keenly aware of God's presence, so real, so near.  I don't know how to describe it except to say I felt carried, lifted on His shoulders.   Every direction I turned, God spoke to me through His Word.

I just returned from our youth retreat.  I cannot speak for the students, but for me personally it was a weekend of blessing, because God met me in my weakness.  He answered when I called. 

I always try to have my ducks in a row long before the retreat is upon us, but this year God did not allow that to happen.  Instead, I was typing up lesson plans the night before the event, and it was not because I had been irresponsible.  In fact, God led me to the Scriptures I was to teach way back in September, and I had been meditating on these truths for some time.  But to come up with the specific outline, to arrive at a flow of thought, as well as visuals and songs to illustrate these truths was not coming to me quickly.  It was like God was saying to me, "Wait.  I will give it in my time.  Trust me."

Trust with twenty pairs of eyes bearing down on me?  Trust when others are counting on me to deliver something worth their time?  Trust when I don't know how to connect with both a sixth grader and a senior in high school at the same time?  Trust when I enter the weekend exhausted, a weekend that demands my energy 24/7?  Trust when I have prayed and it seems to fall on deaf ears? 

Yes, trust.  Because God compelled me to catch this current of faith.  He wanted me to risk my weakness and failure for His sufficiency, so that He could show Himself faithful. 

It started with a specific answer to prayer.  I was burdened for two young women who were not planning to go on the retreat.  It was like God was telling me, "I want these girls to hear this."  But how could they hear if they were absent?  And so I prayed earnestly, by name, for these women.  At the last minute they came.  They heard.   And God wowed my socks right off.

But it did not stop there.  The lessons came together with a flow that I did not even realize was happening until I was actually teaching them.  Furthermore, God gave me some visual illustrations that connected with the youth, not way ahead of time, but just in time.  I know God does that in order to keep me from becoming overly confident in my own strength.  In this way, I remain desperately dependent on Him.

At one point there was a dilemma and it had to do with Saturday's lunch.  I was at a loss and felt helpless, not knowing what to do, but again God showed Himself faithful and provided a solution.  Saturday afternoon I met more disappointment with a change of plans but God showed me my need to be flexible and He worked it out for good. 

At our Saturday night session the Lord's presence drew us in and settled my heart with an overwhelming peace and confidence in Him.  I knew, without doubt, that He was accomplishing His purpose through my life.  And He had been there all along.  There was, indeed, a pathway through the churning waves, for I watched Him lead me through on dry ground. 

A week before the youth retreat, I spoke to a group of women on faith.  The talk was a repeat, one I had given last year for our women's retreat.  But it was like God was making it new to me, showing me that faith does not plateau when we reach our victories.  He wanted me to continue trusting Him, only in a different area . . . through my present circumstances. 

One thing is certain.  Before I call, He answers.  I find nothing more satisfying, nor more thrilling than living in communion with my Heavenly Father, actively taking risks inside the trust zone.  He always remains faithful.  Always.  And as a result, my roots grow even deeper in Him.  


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