Photo by Jessica Ticozzeli
**Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the LORD. There be many that say, Who will show us any good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us. Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time that their corn and their wine increased. **Psalm 4:5-7
Our faith is a combination of believing that God can take care of us and respond to our prayers and trusting that He will do it well and at the perfect time. If we are going through a trial of illness, or problems with our finances, or with our children or challenges in our marriage or in some other relationship, God is working even when we don’t see it. But that is what faith is, right? Believing in what we don’t see? We don’t know when or how He will answer, but, yes, He is working on all of it. Our job is to do the next right thing (as my friend Marissa says) and keep moving forward by faith—believing and trusting.
Our family moved here to Spain over 20 years ago. Though it was challenging to learn a new language and to fit into a new culture we are grateful for all that God has taught us over the years. Even though we are committed to what we do here, we find it very helpful to take a break each year for a short period so that we can rest and be refreshed and return to our overseas life ready to work again. But, sometimes it doesn’t work out that way. Complications happen, funds are low, or responsabilities do not allow a break.
One particular year, we knew in advance that a Stateside visit was not going to be possible. Thingsjust weren’t coming together. Logically, I understood it wasn’t possible, but in my heart I was pretty discouraged about it. For months, I was pretty down about it. The disappoint just hung over me. From December until the following summer, I just couldn’t get past the idea that there would be no break for us. Then, one day, in August of that year, after a long, hot Spanish summer, our oldest children, who were now living back in the U.S, called to wish me a happy birthday. It was great to see and talk to them, but that cloud of disappointment was still there. During the conversation, our daughter asked me, Mom, what are you going to do to celebrate your birthday? I replied that we had nothing special planned. She then said, why don’t you spend it here and visit your friends and family? I explained again that that wasn’t possible, but that we would find some other way to make it nice. She then said, But, Mom, we already bought your ticket and you need to start packing because your flight is in a couple of days!!!!! I couldn’t, well, didn’t believe it!! But after looking at my husband and my son who were sitting next to me, I could see that YES, it was true!! I, of course, started to cry…pretty normal reaction for me. 🙂 So, off I went on my birthday surprise trip!!
I did all the right things, I fulfilled my commitments, but more on remote control than with a trusting heart during those discouraging months. Getting that gift of a trip was better than any treasure chest of gold or diamonds. Because, although my family were the instruments He used, it was completely from God.
The reason I am telling this story is in hopes that it will show how God never is blind or deaf to our heart’s desires. After a bit of questioning, I understood that everyone had pitched in and bought the ticket back in December when I first became discouraged about not being able to go on our break!!! In December!! But I had spent ALL THAT TIME being sad about the situation. I didn’t go to God in prayer. I didn’t believe it could happen. I didn’t trust that God knew what was best for me. But God knew!! And everyone else apparently!! I just pouted. Once I knew I was taking my trip, of course, the gladness of heart was there. But not because I was able to do what I wanted to do, but because I could see, finally, that God does what He does even if we don’t understand if or how or when He will do His thing!
So, when things are rough, and it seems like no good will come of it, reach for your faith in God, trusting He will make it good in His time, and just do the next right thing, believing that God will do His!!