Growing up, I was always in relationships and always in a book. I loved relationship and I loved knowledge and learning. And I didn’t just have a small relationship, I maintained long-term ones, though not for the right reasons. It wasn’t until much later that I realized that this love for connection and intimacy and closeness with others was an important part of my purpose. I mentioned in a previous post that I accepted Christ at the age of 10 years old. I was getting to know the Lord and myself, and I was just getting started with a relationship with the Lord that would require a life-long journey of constant surrender…and I had no idea to what extent I would have to give up portions of myself. I did not want to let go, but it would be required of me.
Fast-forward to my sophomore year in college. I was having the time of my life! Just classes and homework Monday through Wednesday, classes plus college night partying on Thursdays, classes plus the beginning of weekend partying on Friday, time with friends and partying on Saturdays, and attendance at a local church on Sundays. That was my life, and I foolishly thought that it was pretty okay. It was what you’re supposed to do as a saved, college student right? Nope. And the Lord was allowing it, but was getting tired of it all and was preparing to require some things of me. Well, my sophomore year came to an end and I went home for the Summer expecting to return in the Fall to begin another exciting year in the same situation without any thought of what the Lord wanted for me, nor of my purpose. Long story short, because of the sudden lack of financial aid (hadn’t done so well in my classes 😦 ), I ended up having to sit out a year. I was devastated. I cried out to the Lord and He revealed some things to me: He told me that He was going to allow me to go back to school but only when He was ready, he was going to break up my original foundation to create a new one that INCLUDED Him, and that I had to give up on ALL of my ideas of success and greatness and love. Now, of course it took me a while to get with the program, but after realizing that there was nothing that I could do to change it, I gave up and surrendered my ENTIRE being to Him this time. I ended up getting accepted to a different university that the Lord hand-picked for me. While there, I had to focus on my coursework. No partying, no hanging out late nights with friends, no large campus, no event participation…just classes, bible studying, constant praying, and a weekend commute home for church on Sundays.
Now during all of this, I had been in a relationship with an amazing guy for about 2 years and had been desperately trying to hold on to it. It was the only thing that I had not given up. Surely the Lord would not take away the one thing that I loved dearly! Think again. He and I had been arguing relentlessly and I remember praying fervently to the Lord to fix things and fast. I just knew that we would be married and live happily ever after. It’s funny how the Lord’s pick is rarely ours. I eventually, after much prayer, counseling sessions, and long talks with some fellow believers, lots and lots and lots of tears and hesitancy, I ended my loved and cherished relationship.
That relationship had many warning signs that I simply chose to overlook. I chose to overlook them because I THOUGHT that he was the one. You see, I had prayed for a dark, handsome, highly intelligent and educated, thought provoking, man of God and he fit the entire list of criteria perfectly. But I had left off some vital things off of my list that would prove to be way more important and vital to me than even I realized. Oftentimes, the Lord asks us to surrender some really cherished things/persons in our lives, not to break us and leave us there, but to break us and mold us again. Now this process is typically a very painful experience, but much needed. I had never once taken the time to ask God what He wanted for me. I had never asked Him to prepare me for the one that HE had chosen. I didn’t stop to ask Him for direction or guidance in this area. Not once did I look to The One that so beautifully fashioned every part of me for His thoughts on this part of my life. We all want the Lord to write our love stories, but we don’t always want Him to break us and require anything from us. I had unintentionally made relationships, guys, knowledge, intelligence, and false love my idols. It was one of the most heart-wrenching revelations that the Lord revealed to me about myself and I was so hurt–hurt that I had put anything, let alone many things, before my first Love. I was so painful to have found out that I had been hurting Him for all those years. I have found that it is extremely important to make room for intimate, personal time with the Lord. He desires to reveal you, and more of Himself, to you. He desires ALL of you, not just areas that you feel comfortable sharing with Him. He wants to write your love story, but He needs you to give Him your hidden areas, your private struggles, your past hurts, your pride, your idols, your desires, your thought process, your everything. Allow Him to mold and shape you, and ask Him to transform your desires into His desires for you. Ask Him to bring you to a place where you only long for Him–a place where guys/women, relationships, marriage, etc. don’t matter before Him. I did, and the Lord is still eloquently writing my love story; I’m currently in a courtship with an amazing man after God’s own heart who is more perfect for me than I could ever have imagined. Trust God, and come out with your hands up. 🙂
“Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” -Jude 1:24-25 KJV