God's Promises to Us in the Midst of Change
“I found a really great job opportunity, but it might mean moving to Oregon” my boyfriend said from the other end of the line. My normally fidgety self went completely still. My boyfriend, Kaleb, went on about how incredible this job opportunity was and how it could help him reach his dream job while I fought tears. Let me give you a little backstory to this conversation:
- Kaleb and I both lived in Georgia at the time.
- We were discussing marriage and planning to go ring shopping soon.
- I had always figured we would continue living in Georgia, near both of our families and so many of our friends. We had never discussed moving away before.
As Kaleb continued raving about the job I began silently freaking out. I had a picture in my head of how the future was going to look, and the thought of changing it to something so completely different terrified me. To make a months-long story short, Kaleb ended up taking the job and moving to Oregon. Two months later, he asked me to marry him. (I said yes!) And three months after the proposal, he moved.
Throughout this entire time I struggled with being ok with what was happening. I’m the kind of person who likes to make a plan and stick to it. Also, I'm the kind of person who likes to know what to expect so I can prepare. Needless to say, this game-changing move to a place I’d never been before was a major curveball. I needed to figure out how to be ok with changing my plans and dreams because I loved Kaleb and wasn’t willing to give him up.
Looking back I can see why it took me so long to come to terms with this new future. I had thought I needed to come to terms with every single possibility our future held and to be ok with all of my fears coming true. There were so many unknowns and I felt as if I had to work through each of them. Thankfully, that’s not at all what God expected of me.
See, what He really expected of me was to believe Him. To take Him at His word and trust Him to take care of me and Kaleb and all the possibilities our future held. It wasn’t up to me to work through all of this; it was up to Him. The verse He used to assure me that He would take care of everything became my lifeline throughout all this change.
He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it. – 1 Thessalonians 5:24
Such a short verse but such a tremendous relief. I didn’t know what God was planning to do in our lives or how He would provide for us, but I did know that God was pleased with our decision, and I believed He had led us to it. So if he was leading us to Oregon He would be faithful to get us there and help us make it our new home.
Instead of trying to fix things I started to pray. I found myself often praying things like this:
” You’ve said you will provide for all my needs and come through for me when I follow you. You’ve asked me to go, and I will, but I need you to do Your part. I can’t make it all work. I'm relying on you to make our way straight and meet all our needs. I don’t know how You’ll do it but please prove to me You can. Prove yourself true to me.”
I would pray this over and over, every time my anxious heart started to doubt and fear. I clung to the promise of 1 Thessalonians 5:24 as I packed all my belongings in a yellow Penske truck. During our drive 3,000 miles west I clung to it. The verse continued to be a promise as we unpacked our belongings in our new apartment, while we searched for a church, as we tried to meet people, and while I started my new career.
“God wants us here,” I’d preach to myself. “So it will all work out somehow.” And, wonder of wonders, it did. Kaleb and I are a week away from celebrating our one-year anniversary, which means we’ve now lived in Oregon for almost that long. And you know what? The thought of leaving this place actually makes me kind of sad now. I had no idea about all the lessons God would teach us, the incredible experiences we would have, the way Kaleb and I would bond so much, or how many wonderful people we would meet out here. God did know this however. He saw it all and knew we would fall in love with our new home and life. He knew He would make it all work out.
Someone I recently met commented on how we Christians know God’s promises and His faithfulness to keep them, yet we still feel like we need to nudge Him a bit. It’s as if we think, “I know you said (fill in the blank), but I just wanted to remind you about it." That was me on this journey, constantly reminding God that He had promised to provide for our needs and help us navigate all these huge changes. But really I was reminding myself. God never forgot.
There have already been more times since this move when I’ve had to remind myself again that God will come through for me in other areas. He did the time before and will do so again. That’s the beautiful thing about these moments of faith. Each time our faith is stretched by believing He’ll follow through on His Word, it’s that much easier to believe it the next time. Our gracious Father doesn’t hold our fearful natures against us. Instead, He comes through for us time and time again.
The next time you’re wondering how things will ever work out and why your plans have to change, ask yourself: “Have I sought God about this change?” If the answer is no, stop reading and beg God to guide you and give you the wisdom He promises to hand out liberally (James 1:5). Begin seeking Him about this change of plans regularly and ask Him to do His work in your heart. Then, you can accept the change and then embrace it. But if the answer is yes, then preach this truth to yourself and press on boldly: “He who calls [me] is faithful, who also will do it.” God has come through for you before, and He will come through for you again.
Adapted from the original post on Proof Is In the Writing.