‘’My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts, “says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your thoughts.’’— Isaiah 55:8-9
The date is June 2018. I’ve been job hunting for several months now. I’ve applied for more than a few positions and did sit for a couple of interviews; yet, I haven’t landed a job. Early January this year, I applied for a job with the province of Alberta, Canada; I thought this job to be the perfect match for me. After three weeks, I was called in for the first phase of the interview.
Delightedly, I interviewed for the first, the second and then the third round of interviews. The stretched out interview process was both exciting and challenging, not to mention the emotions I’d invested, in fantasizing about my new job role. The job appeared tailor-made for me.
Thrilled by the alluring perks that complemented the job, I began making plans for relocating to Edmonton in anticipation of the job offer. We checked out: mortgage brokers, neighbourhoods and potential schools for our kids; I went as far as looking up a few churches we could attend in that city. Well, in my mind, the deal was done. This job was mine!
The job was supposedly mine until one blustery afternoon in April; I received an email that read, “ Unfortunately, you were not selected as the final candidate.”
Dazed by the unpleasant news I’d just received, I began to slide into apathy. There was no excitement of waking up in the morning. It didn’t matter anymore if I had any goals, talk less to achieve them.
I’d sometimes stare into the air, standing motionless for minutes as if someone pressed a pause button on me. I wondered what I’d done wrong. I knew how well I prepared for the interviews. For some days, I questioned and doubted myself.
But Mark 11:24 says, “Whatsoever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” I did just that!
“Perhaps, I wasn’t as smart as the other interviewees, or maybe trusting God was a waste of time.” I muttered to myself, “Perhaps, I didn’t have as much faith, or maybe I’m not as spiritual as I should. Oh, maybe my life isn’t pleasing to God,…” all the negative voices kept harping at me.
Have you ever been heartbroken that you couldn’t even shed a tear? This was exactly how I felt.
But, in the midst of all that, one thought remained:
“ Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits” — Psalm 103:2
As I reflected on my fate, I mustered every ounce of strength to recall how God had shown himself great, countless times in my life.
How God unequivocally vindicated me at my workplace and how He opened a wide financial door for me in the past. I also remembered how God miraculously helped me in my master’s program. It would be myopic of me to let this disappointment swarm over my past blessings. When doubts inundate our minds, may we find the grace to focus on the previous blessings God had brought our way.
[click_to_tweet tweet=”When we try to open a door, and the door seems continuously shut at us, God may be saying not this door, or not now.” quote=”When we try to open a door, and the door seems continuously shut at us, God may be saying not this door, or not now.”]
You may be going through a time in your life where nothing seems to be making sense. Your head may be spinning from the incessant demands of the work life, family or your relationships. Let these three reminders guide you through the muddy waters of that season.
Three (3) Things to Remember When Life Events Don’t Go as Planned
“Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth”— Psalm 46:10
1. God wants to be magnified and revered in that situation
From health, marital, financial, to emotional struggles, we go through God, there’s an aspect of God that He wants to magnify. As a result, God does not want us to fret or panic when things don’t go our way (Philippians 4:6-7).
Instead of fear, agitations or anxiety, God wants us to experience His power. Like Moses, we can experience God’s power in our lives as we hear Him tell us what to do. However, our hearing is often muffled by our troubled hearts. Isaiah 26:3 reminds us that ” He keeps in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Him”. God’s presence doesn’t alway take away the problem but it numbs the effect of the pain.
It is in the atmosphere of God’s presence that we receive His directives; soon our breakthroughs will emerge. That way, God is glorified and our faith is built up.
2. God sees holistically while we see fragmentary.
‘’God sees the end from the beginning, and His counsel stands’’ —Isaiah 46:10.
When things go opposite of what we think, God may be preparing us for something we are not yet ready for. we want to ask God,” Are there steps I need to take that I have not taken?” In my case, I believe God knows what environment, the colleagues, the place of work, and the neighbourhood I’ll be to make the most impact for Him.
He knows the conditions that will sway or dissuade God’s plan for us. As we pray, “Lord, Let your will be done,” And as we open our hearts to take the desired steps, He will make everything —our strengths, weaknesses, family situations, mistakes, hurts and disappointments work for our good because We love Him and are called according to His good purpose. Romans 8:28
3. God Handles each one of His children uniquely.
Just as we nurse a tomato plant differently from a mango plant, the same way God treats each one of His children uniquely. Even plants of the same species are handled differently according to their growth cycle. For instance, the seeding conditions of a tomato plant are different from the conditions surrounding the flowering season of the same tomato plant. That goes to show that sometimes, God attends to us differently from the other Christians we may know depending on what He wants to accomplish in us at the time. As we grow in our walk with God, He expects to see specific results — fruits— at our different growth stages.
I remember a time when it wouldn’t take me so much waiting or praying to receive anything from the Lord. Then, I didn’t know so much about the word. Fasting was way far off my radar yet as a young Christian; it seemed that at my slightest whimper, God runs to soothe me. Not anymore! Now, it looks as though I have to linger in His presence, learn to discern His will and walk by faith.
God uses everything that happens in our lives to flex our spiritual muscles. He wants us to learn to seek Him, to hear His voice and know His ways.
He knows what He has prepared for us and what ways we’ll impact our spheres best. In addition, God fully understands what we can bear and the best approach to help us become fully mature..
God is with you, don’t despair!
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