People are strange, or at least I am. We pray earnestly for guidance in our decisions; some want to hear the voice of God, some want a clear sign. Then, when God does show us a way, if we are to be honest with ourselves, I think sometimes we don’t actually really want to follow his guidance. Isn’t it funny?
Looking back, I know God guided my every move from one place to another. Even in coming to this city of night lights in my first year of university, and again in staying here to work at this hospital for the year. So far it hasn’t been anything obvious like fingers writing on a wall or burning bushes. But in very “unremarkable” things such as the opportunities and circumstances that arise, and our own priorities and preferences shaped by what we know and apply of God’s word.
It’s not that I miss my old place – I’ve been away for far too long and we moved houses anyway. It’s not that I miss my mum’s cooking – not that she doesn’t make great food, but I can cook most of my favourites and happily buy what I can’t make. It’s not that I am lonely living “all by my lonesome self” as my sister would say – I have good friends and I’m thankful for them. It’s not that this place is too fast paced for me – I haven’t had anyone point out that I walk too slowly or dress too casually in sandals for years. It’s not that I don’t like this hospital – I might not like work itself but I don’t mind the hospital much at all, even if it’s just for the fact that it is close to home or that I like the constant supply of food and beds at the resident’s quarters.
Then what is it? In brief, after praying about this for awhile, I have it on my heart to build relationships – mainly with family, but also at the church I grew up in, and with old friends from high school and even primary school. The clearer this becomes, the more reasons I have for being reluctant to go too.
What if we’re always arguing from trivial things such as who forgot to turn off the lights, to dad making snide anti-God remarks. What if I have even less time to myself in the little time I have away from work. What if I don’t find a suitable fellowship given each time I go back I feel a rather large age gap with the others, what if I don’t share much in common with those who were once my friends. I can’t (and won’t) feign interest in checking out hot backpackers, or get excited about dressing up for clubbing excursions, or pretend to understand what it’s like to work then quit then find a new job then maybe not do much for awhile then work part time for awhile then quit? I’m sure all those issues will be issues.
I remember singing this when I was quite young (and I also clearly remember not really getting what it was talking about, haha) – “where he leads, I will follow, where he sends me I am prepared to go, for as long, as it’s in his will, that’s the safest place to be in I know…” It doesn’t feel like it sometimes, but what can we choose for ourselves that is better than walking in his will? I am reminded again too, that I owe God my life, and that it is to be used for his glory, in whatever he calls us to do.
Things in the past, things yet unseen
Wishes and dreams that are yet to come true
All of my heart, all of my praise
My heart and my hands are lifted to You
Lord, I offer my life to You
Everything I’ve been through, use it for Your glory
Lord I offer my days to You
Lifting my praise to You as a pleasing sacrifice
Lord I offer You my life
(from I Offer My Life)