Search Results for: Hoping For the Best

Hoping For the Best

“The Lord says, I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” ~Psalm 32:8

As Christians, we try hard to hone our spiritual hearing and spiritual sight. We listen for God’s voice to break through the background noise of the world so we’ll know our next steps. We know Jesus is the way, and we know our steps are ordered by God if we allow ourselves to be used by Him.

Often, there’s more than one course of action possible. We have choices in almost everything we do. God’s way is one of many we can pick; His voice is one of many we can listen to. What nobody else can claim though, is the best course of action. God’s way is not just the righteous or holy way; it’s the best way. And it’s ours to travel.

We step out in faith, partly fearing the sacrifices we’ll have to make. We step out in faith, having to resubmit our lives to God and reminding ourselves that we trust Him. We have to pray repeatedly over the same issues within our hearts because it’s so hard to give them up to our Lord. We step out, partly in fear, and hoping for the best.

God has been telling me lately that really there is no such thing as hoping for the best. The best we can have is already ours; we own it when we follow God. It might not look like it all the time, and it might feel painful sometimes. But if we truly believe that God is who He says He is, even the temporary setbacks are cause to rejoice. Because when God calls us to it, whether it’s hard or not, we are in the best possible place we could be. God will bless us for following Him, yes. But beyond that, God already knows the outcome of the courses of action to take. He knows your heart, but also the hearts of everyone else involved. Of course things don’t always seem like the best way to us; we have too much tunnel vision to see the true path. We can only know ourselves and see what our weak eyes can notice. God’s vision, however, is clear. It’s clear through to the end. And He will set your steps in the best possible direction.

Rebekah, for her part, surely had other potential husbands who lived closer to home. There were probably several good choices, decent men she may have had a good marriage with. But she traveled 500 miles with a stranger on a promise from God. She knew the way would be hard and scary, but she didn’t stop to question it. She knew that whatever God called her to be, wherever He sent her, was the best possible option for her life. So she went, willingly and immediately. The fact that she went before anybody even expected her to or wanted her to shows she trusted God completely and went with no fear in her heart. She trusted in God’s best pathway for her life.

As God was telling me this, I go on facebook and see a post from a friend who is moving away to a different country to be a missionary. She was telling her grandmother about the trip and her grandmother asked her where she’d be sleeping. She said “I’m hoping for the best.” Her grandmother, in reply, said “You know….we need to get it into our heads that whatever God gives us IS the best – no matter what it is.”

So I invite you, readers, to claim the best pathway with me. I’ve been called to walk away from a few things lately, and it hasn’t been easy. Maybe you feel God bringing you to a new location, or maybe you feel led to sacrifice something and fast. Whatever it may be, take the time to rejoice in it. Because while we can only see a narrow part of our role in the world, God can see it all. And if we follow in Him, we can rest assured that where we are is not only where we need to be, but the best possible place we can be.

God bless!

~Rebekah A

Shedding the Signs (aka Waiting on the Lord part 2)

“Commit your way to the Lord; trust that God will act, and make your integrity shine like the dawn, your vindication like noonday. Be still before the Lord; wait for God. Do not be provoked by the prosperous, nor by malicious schemers.” ~Psalm 37:5-7

Reading Rebekah M’s post, I realized how much God intertwines our spiritual lives. In a few areas, God has kept me in a place of waiting for awhile now. It is so hard to hear “not yet”, but He has been great at giving me signs just when I need them, and reaffirming His plans for me if I just hold on to His timeline.

So I have been trying to move in this place of waiting, and using the time instead to embark on the journey and growth He has for me today. It hasn’t always been easy. I want the finish line; I don’t always want to do the running required to get there. But God has been telling me to dig in; without the running, the finish line never gets reached. So run, and run hard. Do you want a reprieve, or do you want God’s victory? God wins, every time, and it’s time I embraced that and acted accordingly.

What got me thinking today was this constant need I have for hope and signs from God. When I need to be edified or I need confirmation, I look to Him for a sign. He may have already given me plenty of signs. But I look for more. And tonight I have felt God saying, “Why? Do you not trust that I am God? Just because you are wandering blind, just because you are waiting for my word, am I not still God? Do you not trust that my word will come?”

And it’s true. If I trusted that God was faithful and merciful and omniscient, I would trust in His work. I would trust His silence as much as I trust in His voice. I would trust more, and my walk with Him would look different. There is a beauty in the waiting game, I think, because it brings us to this place of trust. It brings us to walking in mindfulness and intention over our small daily activities in the meantime, and we see that even though we are waiting we are not forgotten. God is still moving, and very much so. We see it and feel it in those small daily things, and for the bigger things, we trust Him to move when it’s right.  If we truly trusted that God is who He says He is, we wouldn’t need constant confirmation. We would just know that He was there. And we wouldn’t need to look ahead or search through our self-made telescopes to see the teeniest outline of the finish line; instead, we would know that the destination doesn’t matter. God gives us victory and trials in their seasons, but as I posted here earlier, God brings us to the best possible pathway for our lives. Who needs the title of “finish line” when right now, in this very second, we are in the best possible place we can be?

Don’t get me wrong; signs from God certainly have their place, and God uses them mightily. But they can become a crutch for us.  Often, we look at a sign and say “hey, God loves me!” and then when we don’t see one we turn around and say “hey, God, where are You?” We need to trust and embrace God’s constancy, so that we can trust and embrace and grow in our dependence on Him. So I say, yes Lord – keep me waiting. Keep me waiting until I learn how to wait right!!

Jesus, help me to walk in the knowledge of who you are and what you do in my life, and bring me to that deeper level of trust. Help me to need You and only You, and shed this need to rely on signs and confirmations. Help me learn to wait in faith and not wait in struggle. Help me learn to embrace the time between as time of training. Waiting or moving, there is no stagnance in You, Father. So help me to not only realize that but rejoice in it, and to know that whatever season You call me to, You are still God and You are never idle in my spirit. Jesus, You know I love You; show me how to trust You like I mean it.

God bless!

~Rebekah A

Finding My Church

Before moving to NY, I was part of a non-denominational Christian church. Our doctrine? The Bible. It was common for church-goers to have a weekly fast day, and come every week with visions, dreams, revelations from God. Bible studies, a 24-hr prayer room, and prayer meetings throughout the week abounded. Some even lived in special houses together, as a way to live intentionally for Christ and witness to others they came in contact with. These people lived for Christ and Christ alone, and He led us to do some really amazing things.

I haven’t found that same combination of spirituality, passion for Jesus, and sense of community/family anywhere since moving. I did find a church whose preaching I love, and I still listen to it in my free time, but it was so big that you could go every week and never see the same person twice. I found one that was smaller and has great outreach and a sense of community, but I have been questioning the spiritual strength. I get the impression that if I were walking down the street with other churchgoers, and felt called to pray for someone that we passed, they might not join me with it. And talking about a fast day, for no reason other than to strengthen my own walk, seems to be a foreign idea. But it could also be a sign that I could be a leader here.

I reached out to my new pastor with an email and a prayer request….just something I was looking for wisdom on. And he replied immediately, with a “I’ll keep it in my prayers”. And at first glance, that’s great. But for some reason, the quick response bothered me. I was sort of hoping He’d spend some time with God before replying. I was going to him with some pretty intense things – signs and visions from my old church, and I wanted his take or some extra wisdom on it. It was almost enough to make me decide that maybe this isn’t my church home after all.

However, to be fair, the advice I sought was based on a few things that are tough to grasp at best, let alone when you’re hearing the story as a third party. Meanwhile I joined a small group there, called a growth group, which keeps me there til Christmas. I’m praying in that time that things have a chance to play out and I get some guidance on where I’m supposed to be!

In the meantime, be praying for me that I hear God’s guidance clearly!

Thanks, and God bless!

~Rebekah A

Getting Closer to Him

As Christians we must learn to walk in spirit and truth. A Christian cannot stand in one place; we are either moving closer to Him or further from Him. Therefore, it is vital that we never stop growing in God. In my own life, these last few weeks have been a wonderful time of restoration and growth in Him. There is nothing like kneeling down in prayer and not just hoping or wishing or thinking or feeling, but truly knowing you are connecting with your Creator.

God desires a closer relationship with each one of us.  It is essential to remember that God supplies the spiritual fire, but we must tend to the flames. A campfire needs kindling to be started, and logs to burn. If we do not keep watch and add wood as the fire burns, it will go out. It is like that in the spirit. It’s not enough to have a one time spiritual experience with God and expect the flames to continue to burn indefinitely without any input from us. A relationship is a two way street; even with God. We give what we can, and God supplies the rest. Do not be mistaken, God provides far more than we ever could and more than we deserve. Salvation is a free gift and there isn’t anything in this world we could do to deserve it. But a relationship takes two individuals being committed to do what is necessary to maintain it. If we do not do the things we know to do to keep the spiritual fire burning, it will perish. In my personal walk, I have been leaning on the things I know to do to grow in my relationship with Him. These are simple things that we all know to do, but we can get lax in them at times. If we put these seven suggestions into practice, God will reward us by giving us deeper insight into who He is, and greater understanding of His unending love.

Seven Steps to a Closer Relationship with God:

  1. Continue regular fellowship with other believers and attendance of church and church related activities. The bible is clear that we should not forsake the assembling of ourselves together and He has set leadership over us for a reason. It is very difficult to navigate this journey alone. God designed us to be part of the Body of Christ.
  2. Make reading, studying and memorizing Scripture a priority in your life. This is an area where a lot of us could use improvement. I know personally, I am not disciplined enough with my bible reading. The written Word is the known will of God! If you are wondering what God’s will is in your life, reading His Word is the perfect place to start.
  3. Commit to deeper prayer. To know God, you must be in communication with Him. In my own life there is not a day that goes by where I don’t pray. Yet, If I am honest I have to admit that there are many days where my prayer is very “surface”.  As Christians we need breakthrough prayer to be the rule and not the exception.
  4. It is time to start fasting regularly. If you want to be open to God’s leading and open to Christian growth, you will need to weaken the flesh and strengthen the spirit. Fasting seems to be one of the best ways to do that. My ability to focus on Him improves dramatically during times of fasting.
  5. Minimize ungodly influences from the outside world. By this I mean consuming less television, secular music, movies, video games, facebook etc… The bible says we are in the world, not of the world.
  6. Live more Christlike. One sure way to get to know Him better is to model yourself after Him more. We need to give like He gives and love like He loves.
  7. Never never forget what He has done for you. Always come to Him with praise and thanksgiving in your heart and above all else seek Him first!

Jesus is our everything! Keep this fire burning… dare not let it go out!

~Rebekah L.