I vividly remember sitting on the floor in the twins room one afternoon about 4 years ago, crying. I was desperate for change, I wanted more. I wanted more than the piles laundry and paycheck to paycheck lifestyle. I felt like life was sucking me dry and I wanted to disappear.
For so many years after that I continued to feel stuck. Stuck in our 3 bedroom condo with 4 kids. Watching my husband work a job that was not utilizing the amazing gifts I know he had. I can’t tell you the countless times I prayed and asked God for more. I asked for Him to just open doors of opportunity and new adventures for us. As parents, we want the best for our kids and I felt like we were not giving our girls the best. We were robots. Wake, work, laundry, dishes, bed, repeat.
I so badly wanted to set our roots in a home in the community I adored. The one I grew up in. Around the people I did life with that, I couldn’t imagine ever losing.
I told God over and over again that I would do whatever He asked of me. “God, please change our circumstances! I’ll do whatever it takes!” But, did I really mean it? When He asked me to leave my surroundings and the things I was holding higher than Him I said no. Unknowingly sticking myself back into the place I so desperately wanted to leave.
On Sunday at church, we sang “Everything and Nothing Less” -by Jesus Culture. I sang these lyrics and God reminded me of where my heart used to be…
“Humbly I stand, an offering
With open hands, Lord I bring
Everything and nothing less
My best, my all
You deserve my every breath
My life, my song
I surrender, I surrender all
Oh, I surrender, I surrender all
Lord take control, I trust You
I’m letting go…”
The truth of the matter was that I wasn’t giving Him my best. I wasn’t giving my everything. I didn’t want to hand over the safe and “perfect” community I longed for my children to grow up in. I didn’t want to hand over the money and job security my husband had. I refused to let go of the baking business I built over 5 years and the people it served. I held tight to the fact I was a few exits away from my parents, my best friends, and that my kids attended one of the best schools in the best district.
I didn’t want to let go and give Him control of my most precious people and my perfect life plans (James 4:10).
I reached the point where my heart flipped. If that’s a thing? I finally said “Ok, God. Here you go. I trust you with everything.” It hurt so bad and I cried. A lot. I still do. I have to fight the bitterness and anger that likes to creep in and tell me, “Well if God really loved you He would have made it work in Colorado. If He’s God, why couldn’t He have made it work?”. Its a lie straight from hell whispered to try to discourage me (John 10:10). The enemy wants nothing more than for me to doubt the power of the mighty God I serve.
Sometimes God doesn’t change our circumstances for a reason. Its because He wants to changes our hearts. My heart needed some serious work. I put SO many things above Him. The idols I was serving were blinding me and keeping me from putting Him first. I wanted to live wholeheartedly for Him, but in order to that, I needed to surrender it all.
My prayer today is that this speaks to those who feel frustrated with their circumstance. What do you need to do in order to put God first? Following Him requires action and choice. He will never force us to chose Him. Yet, every time I surrender and chose Him, I never regret it.