Do the Next Thing

I just came back from bible study with a group of amazing women. I am so pumped up right now from the God stories shared tonight! (although part of that feeling might be the mocha I had this afternoon…) God is moving in people’s lives and it is amazing to see. In fact it is just what I need to see, so through that God is moving in my life. I have been stuck in this place for a long time. Stuck between the past and the future; stuck in the land of do-the-next-thing.

I saw God move in the beginning of this journey, providing and opening doors. One of those doors was the path to becoming a nurse, even though it wasn’t what I wanted to do, the door was clearly open and I walked through it. And this path has been kept open, so I keep doing the next thing, doing the next thing.  I have been doing the next thing for the last three years, and so far it hasn’t led me anywhere. I have a LVN license, but I have not used it. My plans for taking the bridge program to get my RN in one year have totally fallen through, and now I am looking at two years in the RN program starting in the Fall. By the time I am done my son will be 6 and finishing kindergarten.

I want to be done with this phase. I want to know where my life is headed. I want the 5 year plan and the assurance that even thought I have spent all this time in school, I won’t really have to have a full time career the rest of my life. I have held tight to what I want for the future, so tight I didn’t even want to trust it to God. I was too, scared that what I wanted wasn’t what He would want for me.

I have finally been able to let go of it and say ok God I know you have my best in mind, and I trust you are going to do something fantastic with my life. Nothing has changed, but I feel this amazing freedom, because I am not carrying around this worry that things may not turn out the way I want.  After letting that go I was struck with the thought that “you do not have because you do not ask”. I always felt like what I wanted might not be what he wanted, so maybe I shouldn’t ask. But now I feel the freedom to ask for exactly what I want and I know if it is his will, he will provide, and no matter what he will give me more than I can ask for or imagine.

And now tonight I feel like the final piece (not that I will ever be done with this learning process) has fallen into place to help me get through this do-the next thing phase. Tonight Norma shared how God has slowly taken away every thing they had planned in their lives to bring them to this incredible place of opportunity…more than they could imagine! It is so exciting to see what God is doing in their lives and it got me to thinking about my life.

Almost 4 years ago I had everything I had wanted in life, I had a husband, a baby, two dogs and three cats, I wasn’t working, I owned a two story house, I drove my dream car.  I loved my church, I was finally starting to connect with people and get involved in a new town. And in one day all of that was taken away from me, except my baby and my dog, MY plan was in shambles. Now I don’t mean to suggest that God took my marriage away; that is never his first plan for marriages to fall apart. But my plans for my perfect life were certainly taken away. I am now a single parent living in a “studio” apartment. I am still incredibly blessed not to be working, but I am a full time student, working towards a career I never wanted.  Thankfully I am finally connecting with people again at a wonderful church after 3 very disconnected years; and God has used them to bring me to this new place of trust.

So what I realized tonight, is that God has taken me to this place, where everything I thought and everything I had is gone. And he has taken me there so he can do something amazing with my life. So, I can keep doing the next thing without despair, because I know no matter where God puts me it will be in his time and in his plan. And it will be something I could never even imagine 4 years ago.  I have no idea what that looks like, it may look like what I am asking for, it may not. But you know what, I am ok with that…finally.