This is number two of a three-part series where I’ll be sharing my insights on moving into a new year, and creating mental and emotional space for something new, even in a place of brokenness.
Now, after last week’s episode, it’s crossed my mind that someone may not want “something new” in their life. Perhaps, if they could be very honest and vulnerable with you, they’d say they just want their “old” life back. The life where things weren’t full of pain, the life where their loved one were here again, the life where there was certainty and stability. I understand. I remember saying over and over again, “I just want my husband back. I want my life back.”
But one thing I know for sure, once things change, you’ll never have your old life back. Some things and circumstances may be able to be restored, like perhaps a job or a new living situation. But, regardless, change has occurred, and so things will not be like the “old”. Not like it once was. So what do we do? Where do we go from here? Surely, we must be going somewhere. It’s something new, that’s for sure. But, is it going to be good? Are we going to survive…and even thrive? Are we going to be happy again? Hopeful again?
What if we’re not sure where to go or what to do from here? What if there are still just so many unanswered questions and things aren’t quite clear?
In July of 2015, my Mom was diagnosed with an inoperable glioblastoma. The brain tumor was right in the center of her brain. Now, I’m pretty good setting my mind on something and getting things done. But at her diagnosis, I felt utterly lost and blind. I certainly had never been down this path before, and I had no idea what to do next. She was diagnosed in the local hospital of Kerrville, TX where my parents had lived, and the only thing I knew was that I needed to get her to MD Anderson in Houston, where I lived. But past that, I was clueless. I was walking in new areas that were unfamiliar – paths that I have not known before. I needed to know the way I should go. This scripture in Isaiah came to life for me that day. It says, “And I will lead the blind in a way that they do not know, in paths that they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the things I do, and I do not forsake them.” (Isaiah 42: 16)
What happened next was nothing short of supernatural. God laid out the steps for me to take one upon the other. He graciously guided me to people who could help, people who knew what to do “next.” He led me to people who had connections to MD Anderson, and I was told exactly what to do in order to get her admitted into the hospital without delay. From there, my “connection” who was honestly just a friend of a friend who had great compassion for my mom, made sure the top-ranking physician in the neurology department was assigned to her case - Something I found out later would’ve been deemed impossible. Someone even inquired “who” my mom was that she could get this particular physician to attend her. I was being led, each and every step, in the way to go. It was the most amazing set of circumstances that could only have been orchestrated by my good, good, compassionate Father. He turned on the light in the darkness and guided me the whole way. The daunting “rough places” felt more solid and level upon which to walk.
Later, I came upon this scripture in Joshua 3. God was leading Joshua and His people into the promised land. The arc of the covenant was to go before them, showing them the way in which to go. He told them to follow behind the arc of the covenant. Verses 4 and 5 say: “…in order that you may know the way you shall go, for you have not passed this way before. The LORD will do wonders among you.”
This is what He does. He declares it Himself saying, “These are the things I do…”
Deuteronomy 1:33 says, “The LORD your God, went before you in the way to seek out a place to pitch your tents…” God marks out new paths. He moves mountains, providing the “too hard, too big, impossible thing! “The LORD your God who goes before you will also be the One, Himself, fighting the battle for you.”
Deuteronomy 2:7 says,
“For the LORD your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He knows your going through this great wilderness. These (5 years, 8 months) the LORD your God has been with you. You have lacked nothing.”
Okay, the “5 years, 8 months” was my addition. But that’s exactly how I feel. It’s exactly what I’ve seen since both of my parents passed away in 2015. He has been with me every step of the way, lighting up the darkness. Showing me the next step on this new path. I have experienced it over and over again…enough to recognize His presence when He shows up. He’s remarkable. He’s remarkable for me and for you.
So, I want to stop here and ask you, friend. On your personal journey, is there something heavy you’re carrying today and you’re just having a difficult time trusting God with it?
Is there a new path ahead that just looks too daunting, and you’re just not totally sure how God could possibly show up for you?
I think ENTRUST is the word I’d encourage you to hang on to today. It’s different than the word TRUST. Trust is to “believe in the reliability, truth, ability or strength of someone.”
Honestly, you can firmly “believe in the reliability, truth, ability or strength of” God, yet still feel like He won’t come through for you specifically, or that “this is just too big and too much!”
The definition of Entrust is: to deliver something to; to give over, hand over, transfer, turn over, leave, pass. When you feel like it’s hard to trust, entrust. Meaning, turn over the overwhelming feelings to God; hand over the fact that you worry over the weight and responsibilities; pass to Him your disappointments, pain, loss, grief, worry, and fears. Just let Him have it. All. That’s what it means to entrust. Then you’ll see that trust comes because HE SHOWS UP!
The antonyms of ENTRUST are: detain, posses, receive, take in, hold on to, keep, retain. What? Do you really want to do that? No! Absolutely not! And neither do I!
The journey to fully trusting is to entrust. The path to something new is before you. Will you choose to let God lead you in the way that you’re to go? Will you entrust the plan, the purpose, and the way to the God who so deeply, so intensely cares for you? He’s got something beautiful ahead. Another beautiful life! Not like the life you’ve known, no. But He’s making something beautiful out of the broken. Won’t you let Him?