As of late, I have really been down and not myself. A lot of the plans I had made just were't panning out the way I thought they would. I like to have a plan in mind for everything so I have something I am working towards at all times. But being a believer, I understand God works things out in His own timing and in His own way so that we know that it was not by our own efforts but God at work. Well, this time was no different from others in my life. I had in my mind how I would accomplish what God put on my heart, and He had other plans. This is difficult when you feel you're being called somewhere and you're trying to be obedient only to find out the timing may not be right. I guess I'm learning to wait for instruction and not act on impulse, LOL.
So just to back track a little bit so you can really feel where I was mentally and emotionally. I went back to school much later after praying about it. School was great and it looked like I had some promising doors that would be opened. Once I graduated, I decided to study overseas to create more opportunity for me in the sates once I returned, but I was rejected because I was considered too old to start the program. Since I had been planning to move and ended my lease where I currently resided, I had to move back home temporarily. Shortly after I received the bad news from the conservatory, I got an acceptance letter for the same city overseas I originally wanted to study in for an opera program. This was great, but the program was cancelled due to attacks happening in Paris a few days before my departure. I received another call from the same program saying they would like me to come in the summer instead. This was great news, but after the ups and downs I started to feel a little iffy and with the program being 6 months away at the time, I had to figure out somthing for an income. Well I began to panic. I feltI I was trying to be obedient, but every door that looked like it was being opend was being shut just as it looked like I was stepping over the threshold.
Then I really got in my feelings. I went back to school a few years later and now I'm feeling old and unaccomplished. I stopped dating because I had goals and I felt like God was telling me it wasn't time at this point in my life for a relationship. So here I was, back where it all started years ago before being obedient and going back to school. I had a degree but no career, bills and no job, I wanted to continue my education but too old for study, no man, no family , no life just confusion and frustration. How do you respond to life when you feel like you have nothing to show for all your years of hard work? I basically felt like a loser. I would talk to God like,
maybe you're preparing me for something bigger but I don't know what, so what should I be focusing on in the meantime...all sorts of questions and sorts of negativity. This was my state of mind a good 2-3 weeks. I didn't want to talk to anyone, I didn't want to leave the house. I even stopped practicing, and for a classical singer 2 days of not practicing will have you sounding rusty so imagine 2-3 weeks lol. All I did was put in applications, work on new proposals and sulk.
It wasn't until I was reading my daily devotional from Daughters of the King where God called me out. Then I turned around and called myself out lol. The message was called A Joyful Heart and the scripture was from Proverbs 17:22. The main thing I took from this devotional is that a joyful heart doesn't allow hard times or tragedy to cause a broken spirit and that it's able to feel pain and still trust God. Wow, right! When you become a part of the body of christ you are gifted with the fruits of the spirit. Joy is one of those gifts. Sometimes we may need to ask God to help us release it, but it's there. So knowing we serve a God that we can trust to bring us through any situation and take the ugliest picture and turn it in to something beautiful, there's no need to fret. I understand that "waiting" is difficult, but it shouldn't steal your joy because we serve a God who is faithful .
Like I mentioned previously, I had to call myself out too. Because I don't want my outward/inward struggle to cause someone else to stumble or miss something. People are always watching to see how God's people react to pressures of the world. It's not that difficult times don't happen and you try to act like everything is the bees knees, but you have joy because you know you won't be there long and God will work everything out for your good. looking back, I didn't want my emotional state to look like I didn't trust the promises of God, and I didn't want it to seem as if I didn't appreciate the doors opened and closed for me. It's hard to accept closed doors and thank Him for those too lol. Most of all, I definitely don't want someone to question the ability of whom I serve because I'm walking around looking defeated.
As a believer, disappointments that happen in this world should not be the emotional death of us. We have the joy of the lord and truly it is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10). When things become difficult press in and release that joy and lean more into your relationship with God. Allow Him to use difficult times and times of waiting and uncertainty to strengthen you and shape you for what is to come. Realize that sometimes what we ask God for leads to situations to grow us. Below is part of a song form hill song united that I love and sing in my spirit often.
Spirit lead me where my trust is without boarders, let me walk upon the waters wherever you will call me
take me deeper than my feet could ever wander, and my faith be made stronger in the presence of my savior.
I know this was a lengthy post, but I pray that you all receive the message as I am speaking these words to myself on a daily basis. Some days it will take a conscious effort, but I encourage you to always have a joyful heart that it may be good medicine for you and those around you.