"Maybe what messes us up the most is this perfect image in our minds of how things are supposed to be." - Anonymous
The only phrase that makes me cringe more than "what if" is "if only." I never wanted to be one of those people who looked back over their life and wondered "if only." If only I just took that job. If only I just got into that relationship. If only I would have taken that turn, in other words: the woulda, coulda, shouldas. This terminology not only displays a distrust in God with the way things did turn out, but it exudes an underlying tone of discontentment with where we are and what we have in the different areas of our lives.
"God is not going to lead you to any place that's not good for you, even if it doesn't feel good to you."
So by not saying "if only" does it take away the dissatisfaction we have with the way things may have worked out in our lives? Of course not. Which is why when we pray we must first be open and honest with the God who already knows exactly how we feel. It's important for us to know that it's not God's desire for us to feel regretful or unsettled about the doors that were once opened but are now closed. God is not going to lead you to any place that's not good for you, even if it doesn't feel good to you.
I read a quote one day while surfing Instagram (you can follow me @_iamLeah_ ;-) and it said, "the thing that messes us up the most about life is the vision of how we think it's supposed to be." This quote couldn't be anymore true. Yes it's true in Jeremiah 29:11 that God has plans for us to prosper and to give us a hope and a future, but it's very important that we focus on the first part of that scripture which says, "For I know the plans that I have for you." It's God who knows the plans. That text right there completely negates whatever image you thought those plans of prospering should look like. In order for God to work out HIS perfect will in our lives we first have to let go of what we think it supposed to look like and how He plans to do it.
"...our thoughts and our ways will never be on the level of God's."
For the past 3 years, I've had the joy of watching two close friends raise their son Caiden. It's been such a beautiful experience to watch him grow, learn and gain so much insight at such a young age. At 3 years old, he's moving into his "independent" stage and is attempting to do everything on his own, not fully understanding there's still a whole world ahead of him he has yet to really explore. If we were to ask him to pick anywhere in the world that he would want to go, his small perspective on the world around him would automatically limit his selections.
It's the same way with us and God. I don't care how many degrees we have, or how much experience we have to fill up our resumes, or even the many places that we've traveled....our thoughts and our ways will never be on the level of God's. Which just like little Caiden, will automatically limit our view on where we think we should be.
"When we constantly make God the head of our lives and seek Him first for direction, we'll discover more and more that we're exactly where He wants us to be."
So let me free someone today. The Bible tells us in Ecclesiastes 3:11, "Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time..." When we constantly make God the head of our lives and seek Him first for direction, we'll discover more and more that we're exactly where He wants us to be. Open door or closed door. Taken opportunity or missed opportunity. Started relationship or ended relationship. Trust God and trust His process. It's also important to note that there will be times where we completely defy God's instruction and deliberately choose our own way. Although it may delay His will, He will still get the glory, because He always gets the glory. So let's stop panicking, worrying and feeling unsettled about where you are, because right here, right now, in this place, is exactly where you are supposed to be.
*For more information on this topic, check out the following scriptures: