When I get ready for church Sunday mornings, sometimes I like to jam to praise music. Sometimes I don't listen to anything. And sometimes, even though I know I am going to be hearing a sermon later in the morning, I listen to a Matt Chandler sermon.
Today was one of the "sermon" mornings.
Matt is doing a series in Habakkuk and, except for today's sermon, I'm almost caught up. I'm currently listening to the sermon entitled "American Monkeys" and I promise that will make sense if you listen to Week 7 & 8 of the series! In it, he talks about the idols in our lives (from physical beauty to fulfillment in marriage) that replace our dependence on all powerful God. He called anything that we try to control an idol. And it got me thinking: what is the one thing I am trying to control that really belongs to God?
My job. My next apartment. My future.
If I had my way, I would have a job in place already, a new apartment lined up and ready to move into June 1st. But...that is so not the case. My friend told me a few weeks ago, while we were discussing this very thing, that God is sometimes "the eleventh hour God." Not to belittle Him in any way, but often times He makes us wait, makes us freak out a little, makes us get to the point where there is no earthly explanation for the miracle He is about to unleash in your life. The last step before He moves? It's the step of faith I have to take, believing that He will move because He says He will take care of me.
I have a love/hate relationship with that step. I love it because I can throw my hands up like the prophets of old and say, "God, look at this! This is the problem. What are You going to do about it?" I realize that He is ultimately in control. It's not my plan, but His, that will bring about His glory and plan for my life. On the other hand, I hate it because I feel like I'm drowning. I can't see the two steps in front of the end of May. And not knowing scares me.
So as all of this is on my mind, I head to church. One of the passages that was used in the sermons jumped out and slapped my idol of security around a little more.
Acts 17:26 says that God has "determined allotted periods and boundaries of their dwelling place."
That means...that God knows how long I will be in this drafty apartment (which I am thankful for!). Not only that, but when HE allowed me to move here, He directed my steps. He knows which day is the last day I sleep here and the first night that I will sleep in my new apartment. And BONUS-- He knows WHERE the new apartment is!
Pastor Tim said something similar to this last week. Something about the geography of where we are and how God has a plan for it. I hear it. I want to believe it. But sometimes I guess it takes a few preachers a few different times to get it to sink into my brain.
I extraordinarily thankful for humans who don't give up on me. It gives me a taste of what it is like to have a God that never even thinks about abandoning me. And having cheerleaders like that in my corner? It makes me ache for Heaven, but it also reminds me that I'm not living life alone.
And that is an encouraging thought.