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  • Writer's pictureRuth Sauers

Vacations, renovations, destinations (a few things I have been learning)

You don’t have to have everything figured out before you can rest in God.

This summer I was kind of confronted with something that hit me weird. It was a belief at first glance that I would have thought I held to. But it just felt so wrong as I thought about it. And that bad feeling led me on a quest to look into it and try to uncover more of the issue and understand it better and come to a better idea of what I believe about it, what I believe to be true. So I dug into some books and I listened to quite a few podcasts and I wrestled and I thought about it.

But the more I wrestled and listened and read and dug the more I realized there was so much more to wrestle with.  And I kind of started to feel panicky. I felt like I really needed to work this out and figure out what I believe about this. And then I went on vacation. And I was sitting on the porch of our vacation rental, smelling the salt air and talking to God and just thinking, doing a little reading. And it was like He just said to me, you don’t have to have everything figured out before you can rest in me. You are not on your own figuring this out. I am with you. And I will continue to lead you and guide you. And I will reveal what I want to reveal to you in my timing. I will be with you in your search and you can bring all of your thoughts and your questions and your struggles to me. It was like a weight lifted right off of me. I could enjoy the rest of my vacation knowing there wasn’t some timetable I had to have this figured out by! I could just keep bringing it to God, I could keep asking him about it, He would never tire of my conversation, even if I wanted to talk about some of the same old things again and again. And He might give me answers soon, He might not give me answers for a while, He might never give me the clear answer I'm looking for. But He always is delighted when I come to Him, when I tell him what I'm thinking and ask Him to help me. And He will continue to guide me into truth.

Another thing I have been learning - If you want to do something, just start, start small- take a step, have a conversation, ask a question, make a phone call. Oftentimes God puts desires in our hearts because that is exactly what He wants us to do. I grew up learning to look at desire with a suspicious eye. Desires can’t be trusted right? They come from my heart that is inclined toward evil? But God made me, intricately crafted me, and even designed my brain and the way I’m wired and the things I am drawn toward. I’m learning that God works through desires, in fact, I think that’s where it often starts, we have a desire about something and can choose to get curious about it, or we can be wary and suspicious of it.

Last fall, I felt such a stirring in my heart that now is the time to begin pursuing something that feels like a calling, now is the time to step out and take a little risk and see what God might have. I applied to a program in October and I just learned a few weeks ago that I am on the waitlist for this year, and I have first dibs on next years cohort. I wish I could be starting this year, and I took all those feelings to God, they were very strong, and He helped me sort through them. But I know He makes no mistakes, and His timing is best, and He will provide just what I need in this time of journeying and He will make it clear what the next step is, and when to take it. So I look forward to, most likely, starting next year.

Steve took a week off in November. We had talked about turning our den into a library but I wasn’t sure when we would have time to actually start working on it. Our den tends to be a catch-all room where we can stuff stuff that we don’t want in other parts of the house. So starting the project seemed a bit daunting to me, and I kept thinking I needed to sort through all the papers and figure out where things should go and then we could start.

Well the Monday Steve had off, he just started picking up and shuffling papers and putting them in a box and taking books off the shelves and putting them in bins and decluttering the room. He just started without a real plan. And I came home from work and so much was decluttered and the project was started. It was such a lesson to me that sometimes you can just start, you can pick something up and move it, you can decide as you go, you can take a step and then figure out the next one. We are slowly working on the den and it is turning into more and more of a library and this project is so full of hope, so full of excitement as I think about what we will use this room for and all the ways it will benefit us and others, (and how it will house my small and growing record collection, and how it will be and already is a wonderful place to watch a movie and read a book and relax in front of the fireplace and carry on deep conversations and smoke a stogie and just feel like a bougie academic) …ok maybe I digress a little.

Lately I feel like God has been impressing on me in various ways that He is working so much through the journey, we don’t have to wait until the destination. He is in the journey, He is working in the journey, so much matters in the journey, the journey is life. Only a very small part of our lives is destination. Most of it is journey. Only a small part of it is mountaintop experiences. Most of it is mundane, day-to-day faithfulness, day-to-day walking with God, cultivating a relationship, cultivating communion, knowing the Father and letting Him know us, sitting with Him and walking with Him, and letting his face shine on us.

Faith Eury Cho says, “We feel like we need to chase the extraordinary to build what is real with Jesus. But, whatever you are doing, it’s not the exclusion of the natural, it’s the inclusion of the supernatural - the presence of God. It’s including the Holy Spirit in everything we do that makes the moment supernatural.

What if the most world-changing and history-making thing you can do is to befriend the presence of God?”

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