our whispered words are louder than bombs

I have a very clear memory from a solitude retreat I took my second year of Seminary.  It comes back to me frequently, like a still voice from the Spirit reminding me to keep myself in check.
I was taking a walk through the neighborhood by the church I was currently attending (that I now work at).  I was walking past all of these cute houses with kids playing in the yard and I felt that feeling that most single girls of a certain age feel… I want that.  I don’t want to be stuck here in Seminary.  I want to be in my call.  I want to know where I’ll be spending the rest of my life (or just the first chapter).  I want to know who I will be spending it with.  I want to have the wrap around porch where I can sit with my friends and watch our kids play.  I don’t want this – I want that.
Then a line from the Shauna Niequist book I was reading at the time rang through my ears, “Don’t try to fast forward yourself into a future you haven’t yet earned.”  (From Bittersweet).
I didn’t know then that that neighborhood would be one I would drive through several times a week once I received my first call.  That neighborhood would be one I would take prayer walks in with our kids on our All Church Retreat.  That neighborhood would be canvased by me, alongside our leadership team and staff.
That moment floods back to me a lot.  When I see someone or some situation that I wish I had in my life, Shauna’s words continue to ring true in my ears.  It reminds me that I still have a great life to live right here right now.  All that stuff awaits me in the future – maybe, who knows?  I know there are things in life that I want to have, that I want to experience.  And I know that my God loves me and wants to give me the desires of my heart – in his way, in his timing.
I know someone who says that when we’re waiting it’s because God still has something left to teach us.  The immature person in me wants to tell God I’ve learned enough – I’m ready for my hearts’ desires.  But the mature person in me tells me that there are mountains of lessons to learn before I’m fully ready for that next step.  I’m still in process, as hard as it is to admit – it’s true.
Jesus tells us not to worry in the Sermon on the Mount (See Matthew 6).  He tells us to “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, live righteously and he will give you everything you need.  Don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries.  Today’s trouble is enough for today.”
Some days I need to repeat this to myself multiple times.  Some days I live it out without reminders.  And plenty of days fall in between the two extremes.  I just continuously remind myself that in a world where I’m told my worth is determined by whether or not I have a ring on that finger and kids in tow, those messages are not from God.  That is a future that I have not yet earned.  For now, I will seek the Kingdom of God above all else, try my hardest to live righteously and trust in the fact that He will give me what I need, when I need it.

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