Part four. Here we are at the end of the first chapter of the book I am working on. Have you ever felt lost? No worries, we are never lost to God. He knows exactly where we are and where we are headed. If you would like to read the other three parts to catch up – feel free! (Part 1 , Part 2, Part 3). I would also love for you to comment, share, or follow on facebook! Thank you for coming along for the adventure! See you soon!
The map. The house. We can get caught up in these things and forget the bigger picture. I know, I have done that too. From cinder block walls to kelly green carpet that even went into the bathroom (yuck!) and faux brick flooring to the incessantly barking dog next door, many times I have started to wonder if this is really where God wanted me after all. I have found myself searching for God in those places or attempting to survive hoping we move sooner than expected.
I have felt lost.
It’s not just houses and locations that do that, but people and culture as well. Some places I fit like a glove, find wonderful friends and carve out a niche for myself in that place. Then in other places, I struggle to make any friends, finding a church becomes a challenge, and getting acclimated to the local environment (i.e. finding my way to Walmart) is no easy task – like I am walking through the valley and my feet keep getting stuck in the mud.
Military life can be a challenge. I know it can be for me at times. Once I live in a place for a while and then move, I struggle with those same feelings again. Having finally started to swim in that place and find my way, then moving and feeling like that little fish in the giant ocean again.
God shows up to remind me, though, that He knows exactly where I am. How thankful I am. I may have no clue where I am or what I am supposed to do here, but He does. He knows the challenges I will face in this place and also the opportunities I have to share Him with others. He knows all of it, and has already come up with a plan.
What I have to learn to do it listen. Me? I have a tendency to either just set off in a direction and hope I am going the right way, or sit down and do nothing at all. I don’t believe either is His plan for me. Waiting for Him to give me direction before moving is great, but I don’t think he wants me sitting on my laurels. Being ready to move at a moment’s notice, paying close attention to His voice of direction – now that is a much better plan. Our relationship becomes vital. The better I know Him the better I will understand His direction and His heart.
I may be in the dark and have no clue what the map says, but I am learning to trust the One who drew the map. Military life is a challenge, but it is also a wonderful opportunity to see God at work in real life.
In moments when I question my usefulness in a place or even if I am in the right place, I ask God for a MIT – a moment in time. My request is not for Him to show me the path or even to point me in the right direction, but reassurance that He is there too. I ask Him to give me one moment throughout the day where I can see Him, one simple moment in time where He is evident. You know what? He has never let me down. He knows me and He speaks to me – sometimes in the craziest of ways, but these moments in time give me the drive and determination to “do it another day.” I am confident once again that He is there and in control, and that is all I need.
I do feel lost sometimes, but I am not lost to Him.
Military wife, campfollower. An adventure I never expected. A part of the map I was not tracking. Home? Well, home has been in many geographical location, none of them being a surprise to God.
I see myself much like the young man at camp that year. I was freaking out periodically when this all started because I had yet to acclimate. Those who knew me in those first years probably thought I was a nut – and rightly so. I imagined all sorts of craziness, but Jesus kept holding my hand. I made it through the dry riverbed and even sleeping in a teepee a few nights.
I am pretty sure I have not yet completed all obstacles as of yet. Just like the young man, each destination and each day brings challenges of their own. Do I try new things? Am I willing to stand on the Pamper Pole and trust the rope? I am getting better. My challenges are certainly minimal to what others have endured. I live in air conditioned houses, drive vehicles at 70 miles per hour to our next duty station, and my husband receives a regular paycheck. I should be thankful. Other camp followers have had a much different experience.