Philippians 4:6-7, "Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."
"I give up!"
Have you ever been at this point? You were so frustrated with trying and trying yet getting nowhere, so you came to the end of yourself and realized you couldn't make it happen on your own?
This was me. Last Saturday, I came to the end of myself. I had been trying to make life happen for myself for far too long, and I was burnt out. I desired to meet people to become friends with but was having a difficult time with this. I'd put in numerous applications online for full-time employment with very few responses in my favor. After trying and trying to get life to work out on my own and feeling like I was getting nowhere, I finally got to the point that I gave up. I didn't give up in a way of quitting life. I gave up in a way of finally realizing I couldn't do it on my own, and I needed God to intervene on my behalf.
This is the prayer I prayed:
"Lord, I give up. If You want me to work somewhere with full-time hours, You're going to have to open the door. I'll do my part and put in applications, but I can't make employers like me. Only You can make someone come across my resume and like what they see enough to interview and hire me. With making new friends, I'll do my part to be friendly and reach out where I can, but I can't make people like me and want to be my friend. You're going to have to show me favor in order for them to want to be my friend in return. If You want me to get married, You're going to have to work it out. I can't magically find a man after Your own heart who is available and will love me in return, so I give up. I'll be who You want me to be, but I give up trying to make this happen on my own."
At the end of my prayer, I experienced the peace that surpasses human understanding. Finally, I had truly surrendered to God and let go of trying to work life out on my own. I decided whatever He wanted was what I wanted and I'd rest in Him regardless of what happened.
On Sunday, I went to church, and there was a newcomer's luncheon after second service. I debated whether to go or not, but then I remembered that my whole reason for trying a new church was to find people I could connect with and fellowship with. So, I went to the newcomer's table and asked where the luncheon was at. The pastor's wife "happened" to be walking by at that moment and realized I was looking for where this luncheon would be held. She walked with me right to the place. Then, people who have gone to that church for eleven years "happened" to sit next to me and "happened" to have two daughters who were around my age. They were talking to me and then told me about a college group the church had just "happened" to restart a few weeks back. The pastor's daughter "happens" to be my age, and she walked me over to the building where the college group is held so I knew where I was going when I came.
I left church last Sunday in absolute awe of the fact that when I finally stopped worrying about making life happen on my own, and I finally gave God the reins, He worked everything out!
This is one of the ways God worked in my life, but it doesn't end there.
Two days ago, I received a message from someone I had send a resume to. They came across my resume and wanted me to go to an interview the next day. So, yesterday, I headed down the hill to an interview. I got there not knowing exactly what to expect, and I didn't really even know what this company did. It turns out, they are the people who try to get you to sign up for Direct TV at Costco. The position they were hiring for was certainly not my "dream job" but I figured if they called me back then I'd take the position. They said I'd hear from them between 4 and 5 o'clock last night if they were considering me for the position and wanted me to come down for another interview. That time came around, and I didn't receive a call back. This may sound like a disappointment, but God used it to make me realize something. Me looking for a job to better myself in isn't bad, but what I thought I wanted wasn't really what I wanted at all. Where I work right now is a place where the atmosphere is wonderful. God has shown me favor with my managers, and they have been really good to me. I had a heart-change in the last week and a half, and I realized that my heart's desire is to get involved more in pro-life ministry. Where I'm at right now, I can do that. If I am working "full-time" at a company, I won't have time to do what I believe God is calling me to do right now.
So, the moral of me sharing this story with you is that when we finally come to the end of ourselves and surrender to God... when we finally allow Him to take the driver's seat and we give up trying to do everything on our own, He will show up. Perhaps it'll be a situation like the church where God opened doors for me relationally where I was feeling empty before. Or, perhaps it'll be like the job situation where you realize that what you thought you wanted wasn't really what you wanted at all. Either way, I encourage you to pray instead of being anxious about everything. It's amazing the peace that you'll find. It truly does surpass human understanding.
Dear Heavenly Father,
I just want to thank You for what You've done in my life even just in the last week. You gave me such peace when I quit trying to run my own life and I gave You the reins. You have worked everything out in a week that I spent months trying to work out on my own with no progress. I praise You for being my God and also my Lord... the Leader of my life. In Jesus' Name.