It's one of those words we hear often, usually thrown about in the midst of some sermon about salvation, and often taken for granted.
Lately though, for me, every time I hear the word faith, it has struck a nerve. Every time.
Needless to say, it was amazing to me this morning when Pastor Mike told us that his entire sermon was going to be about people with the gift of faith. The gift of faith, wow, now I get it.
You see, I'm not a worrier. Sure I struggle with things, and sure sometimes I panic, but when it comes down to it, I always know God has it under control. This, usually, to others, ends up seeming crazy.
The last couple of summers, when I served as a summer missionary, I had LOTS to do and prepare, and often, it seemed to everyone else that I didn't have all of my ducks in a row because I didn't know 100% what I was getting myself into months before I left and didn't have everything ready to go. For example, it was two days before I left last summer when I finally got someone to sublet my apartment and pay the rent I wasn't sure I would be able to pay while I was gone. Interestingly enough, I never worried about that. Not once. I knew God had led me to New England, and I prayed that he would put all of those details into place, and even when it seemed that I should start worrying, I didn't.
I've been dealing with this a lot lately. Everyone is super freaked-out over my big move, but I am not in the least worried about anything. When it comes to doing God's will, I never have any worries. I know God has led me to New York, and when the opportunity came up to do what seemed like something completely nuts, I took it.
Chris Belser told me the other day that when he was talking to my former mentor-teacher, she kept telling him how she worried about me moving to New York and not having a job lined up for the fall. I laughed. I am not at all worried about this. Pastor Mike said this morning that people who do not have the gift of faith don't understand those of us who do and the decisions we often make. We are not confined by our circumstances. We do things that often seem crazy. This is when I realized this was one of my gifts. A gift I am extremely thankful for.
I'm going to New York in less than three weeks. I have a little bit of savings. I have a couch to crash on for a little while. No I do not know where I'm going to live. No I do not know where I'll be working in the fall. What I do know is that I am going to be a part of a ministry that changed my life, and I get the greatest joy knowing that. I also know that God may be using this opportunity to lead me into something that satisfies my hear more than teaching. Something that uses my gifts in a more fitting way.
Do I know how this is going to play out in terms of my finances? No. But I have a feeling God has that under control.
I have situations in my life that I have a hard time turning over to God, but I've come to realize that even those things are out of my control, and that he knows what he's doing. Today we read the story of Hannah in 1 Samuel. She wanted more than anything to have a child, and she was not able to. She was always a faithful person, but she had difficulty dealing with this issue. Finally, she cried out to God, and let him handle it. She stopped trying to handle it herself. And whatd'ya know, he took care of it. He knows what he's doing. We learn from waiting for things. I've cried out to God to deal with my own issues that I have a hard time letting him handle, and I feel like a burden has been lifted from my shoulders.
I cannot express the peace I feel in this decision to move. It's the most comforting and beautiful feeling I've ever had. I wish I could share it with others so they could see the adventure I am embarking upon and feel this beauty for themselves. Then they might understand.
For now, I'm going to enjoy the "Are you nuts?" looks I get from people when I tell them where I'm going and what I'm doing.