08 July, 2009

"More Zoo"

Lately, I've been in a place in life where I just don't know where my next turn or move should be. I call out to God, I pray, I talk with Him constantly (it's a steady, all-day conversation, just like it's always been), I read His word and I listen for a reply at all times. I've not gotten the reply I'm looking for, in fact, I don't even think I've heard any sort of response at all. Not a peep. Have you ever been here? It's not a place I have frequented often in my life, in fact, I've hardly been a passer-through. Now, however, I seem to have found myself a somewhat permanent resident and I do not like it one bit.

Now, I'm the kind of girl that while I do not at all require huge, flashy displays or signs (I consider myself rather keen on picking up subtle clues and hints) I love people and I love conversation. That being said, maybe you can imagine my dismay and – to be completely honest – slight confusion when my absolute best friend of life just one day seems silent on me.

I say "seems" silent, because I don't know; maybe I've just gotten worse at listening over the years, maybe I don't make room for it, maybe I'm not going about listening in the right way, I'm not sure but I'm not leaving out any considerable options at this point. I am desperate and somewhat disillusioned as to what to do, how to do it or where to go next.

But that is much too easy to say, I just realized. Maybe I am "disillusioned" because I'm not listening correctly, maybe I'm "disillusioned" because I'm drowning Him out, or maybe I'm "disillusioned" because I'm not really, honest-to-goodly making the time for Him that I really think I am. Maybe it's that I expect Him to speak to me on my terms, when I have the time. (i.e. at work, in the car, while I'm working on my website . . .) though honestly, I don't care when or how He speaks to me so long as I hear something – I am just beginning to think there may have never been a time when the line "It's not you, it's me!" has been so appropriate.

There are a lot of things I know, and I don't consider myself to be a silly when it comes to knowledge; and I have also experienced so many great and wonderful things of Him in life that I do not doubt His greatness or presence in my life at all! There is, however, the humbling fact that I am not the same person I was when I was 13. Where before I may have looked at that sign and say, "Oh, 'more zoo' means there is more of the zoo that way, what part I don't know, but there's more of it whatever 'more' turns out to be!" now I sometimes find myself saying, "Oh dear, I see that it says 'more zoo,' but what exactly is 'more zoo'? Is it the tigers, the lions, or the bears?" and it is a humbling fact that I think I have come to realize (only this much in the writing of this blog!) but also one I need to remedy as soon as possible. I want to return to my childlike faith, and that is not something easily done with even a speck of pride. I don't consider myself a prideful person, and I don't have many problems admitting when I'm wrong, but I do enjoy being right! Now, however, I believe I am wrong. I think it's time to take another journey . . .

I know that He loves me. I know that He wants the best for me. I know that He speaks to us at the times He deems right, and not always on our time or our terms. I know that He is good. I know that He is faithful. I do not question His faithfulness, goodness or the direction He has for my life; I know He has it and I know it's awesome and can't wait to take my part in His big plans for the world! My only questions are what, when, where and how. "What do I do to get started?", "When does He want me to get started?",  "Where does He want my part in this plan and my destiny to take place?" and "How am I going to do it?" I'm cool with blindly following, I completely trust Him with my life and my destiny . . . but I don't feel like just getting up and carrying on like I've always carried on is going to cut it much longer – there is something I'm supposed to be doing.

My pastors and dear friends Micah and Jennifer have been encouraging me non-stop to remain focused on Him with all I am; and I have been trying, trying, trying. But I have to tend to "real life" and responsibilities too, how do I juggle both? My scales of balance have been skewed so drastically, I find that in the car, in the shower, at work and in my head constantly just talking to Him about my day, my thoughts and my concerns are the only times I really get to spend much time with Him aside from my nightly readings. Church, my Tues. meetings with Jennifer and Mon. bible study are huge priorities for me, and I hope He sees that. I'm trying.

The women at bible study and Jennifer have been such blessings in my life, I have no words for how much of an impact they all have been making on my life and I've been leaning on them all so much for so many supports, lately. I feel almost as though I'm taking too much of people's time, but I cannot do it without them and I need the wisdom and support of those so much wiser than me now more than ever, and I need the accountability, to boot.

The world is pulling on me in a million different directions now more than I've ever felt before in my life. I feel as though I'm in a whirlwind daily. The only things I know for fact right now, like I said, are that I love Jesus and I know He loves me and is always right beside me no matter how dark it may get and that He will never leave me or forsake me. In that I find peace. Sometimes it's so hard to find His voice out of all the others that shout at me throughout the day. I find myself at night asking myself how I let myself start my day with the understanding and head-knowledge that all that matters in that day is Him and the purpose He has for the earth and me, and then by that night having been side-tracked with all the daily "life" thoughts. I don't want to have those thoughts, and I don't want to "busy" myself with anything other than His plans for me. I wish I knew a way to remove work from my daily life and just be with Him like I used to, but for now I'm doing my best with what I have and trying to be a light for Him in the darkness and an example of His love to all wherever I go. It's all I know to do.

I don't know beyond a shadow of a doubt how or where He wants to use me, I just know He wants to use me. I'm trying to find the place He needs and wants me to be, and I'm hoping that I find it sooner rather than later. I am so eager to get going with His plans for me! I'm just itching to start going and being and doing, and I want to jump and run and shout after every time I'm around the energy that is present at church on Sunday mornings but after service I seem to be hit with the realization that I don't know how or what or where. I don't really know any of the path, but I'm trying to walk down it anyway. How do I just jump in and start going? I'm still trying to work that all out, is that how He means me to start? Simply by starting? I'm not sure, but I know I cannot stay immobile any longer, so my plan is to just keep doing what my hands find to do until I know beyond a shadow of a doubt I'm supposed to be in some other role.

That's all I have for you all, just an update on my asking until it is given to me, seeking until I have found and knocking until the door(s) are opened unto me. Life is a crazy journey, you guys, and it is very daily. I find peace and reassurance in the fact that each day only comes one at a time and that I am never, ever alone in the endeavor that each day is. Our God is a great, big God; the only God in the heavens and on the earth! I cannot wait to see all nations and kingdoms bow before His greatness, He alone is worthy from now until forever! I am so thankful to be able to call Him my friend.

Matthew 7:7
"Ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you shall find: knock, and it shall be opened to you."

Psalm 119:105 & 106
"Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. I have taken an oath and confirmed it, that I will follow Your righteous laws."

The thing about it, too, is that He rarely chooses us for positions we feel completely ready to take on! A lot of the time, we just have to trust Him and say, "Okay." and it all falls into place. That's the way He tends to do almost everything, so the same with speaking to me. Lord, I think this is the part where I ask You to help me attain more patience. :P Or is that what you're trying to teach me all a long anyway?

Thank you all for your prayers and support, I appreciate them so very much.
xx m


Sierra said...

Childlike faith is always something I wish I still had. I'm so glad to hear that you have no doubts and you're following him wholeheartedly and not looking back. I think that's my biggest struggle, something inside of me wants to say "What if none of this is true?" I do believe it, I know I do. God is real. He's there. He's my one true love and he answers all my prayers. I think it's the society I've been brought up in that makes it so difficult.
So to me, YOU have the easy part down, now you just have to wait. You just have to keep praying, keep reading his word, and keep seeking him and everything WILL fall into place. That I can promise, no one knows when but it will happen. When things like this come on I tend to lose my faith but you need to stay strong and it will happen quicker than you could ever imagine. Never lose hope, faith, or you relationship with Jesus Christ.

We all have our own trials in our Godly walk and all we can really do is seek out to other believers and ask for adivce and guidance.

I'm not saying I have all the answers, I don't even have my own answers. But, all I'm saying is, keep at it. Keep doing what you're doing. Look for the guidance and the fellowship with other believers they'll only help you to grow more and understand what's going on. I have personal experience with that.

One day, soon. Very soon. God WILL show you what to do. Surrond yourself with the right people and take leaps of faith and he will point you in the right direction.

And now for my favourite verse which ALWAYS brings me back to Earth and I hope will help you: "Commit everything you do to the Lord, trust me to help you do it, and he will." -Psalm 37:5

And another one for good measure :D

"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." -1 Corinthians 10:31

Pryaing for you and your family, always! <3,

Rachel said...

Haha, patience...that's what I was thinking while I was reading it. Another thing, I don't know exactly where you are on deeper levels than what you've put here, but think: you're almost 20 years old, God has already started using you. :) Every day that you live, everywhere you go, God is using you. I totally understand about looking for a life's purpose that's awesome and wonderful and completely right on, but don't forget that his purpose is to live every day for him as well, which you're already doing. Every dry place is a lesson in itself, which I can see you've already realized. I wish I could give you some wise, sage advice, but alas, I'm at the place you are. One thing I've learned is to not fret. It's okay to relax and just "be" and live with him every day. In my mind, God understands our every day responsibilities because they are a part of the fallen world and such. I think it's great that you spend every moment and thought with him. I'm sure he loves that. :) One more thing, knowledge is great but putting that knowledge into action is great too. You know certain things about God, so act upon that. Live your life like you believe them to be true.
Love you!

MikisthatChick said...

that is such a well written explanation mallory! i think the fact that you can write all that out makes is apparent that you have a deep understanding of Him and the kind of life you should lead.
I'm just guessing, but maybe it could be that what you are looking for is not that far away from where you are now, and its only a matter of time before you find that out for yourself. does that make sense? Thats what popped into my mind first, so i thought i'd get it out.

and i love the Matthew scripture, thats the one my mom always says to me <3

God Bless!

Mallory said...

Sierra: thank you for your prayers and the verses of encouragement! I know exactly what you mean and where you are coming from when you say you sometimes have moments of questioning . . . I think we all do at times. It is SO important that we just keep pressing on and in and trusting, though, and I'm so encouraged by the reminder and the fact that you remind yourself constantly - it is really important. I know from knowing Him that He will show me what to do and how to do it, I just have to be patient and wait it out. It can be so difficult lately, but I'm pressing on. Continue to as well, He will bless us for our faith! <333

Rachel: Patience is so fleeting! Oh, I know. I do my best to shine Him through me to the world no matter where I am, and I know he is using me and my life daily . . . I just feel as though there is something specific I'm supposed to be doing . . . and I'm not sure what, but I feel it all the same. "Being" is what I am learning and re-learning every day, I feel every day I feel I get close to getting it I have to begin again in the morning! Haha. I love you, thank you for your words of encouragement. <33333

Mik: Thank you for your encouraging words also. I'm not sure, it might be just around the corner! I am the last person who even hopes to guess! But that's how He tends to work: in ways we least expect! I'm just trusting and leaning on Him with all I am and have, I know nothing else to do. Thank you for your comment, prayers and thoughts. <3333

Anonymous said...

So, Mall. I think there is a slight mis-match here.
"I am patient" (but why doesn't he answer me?)
"I know he's there" (but why doesn't he answer me?)
"I don't need a big, flashy sign" (but why doesn't he answer me?") ...

You get the gist!

So easy to do this, ask the "but why's..?" when we think we are not asking. I'd say, maybe not beat up on yourself, but also, be aware of what you are doing.

Finally, I have to say that your comment, "but I have to get on with every day living," may give you a clue on why you feel you are getting no answer. IN ALL THAT YOU DO, you are living and doing God's work. Waiting for some big answer even if your question is quiet.... well, is your humility or your ego looking for you? I think that if you can see the goodness and grace in what you do every day, in your daily work an living, and consciously bring joy to it, then I have a suspicion that suddenly you will start hearing what you seek again.

Right now, the danger might be that you are drowning out the answers with the noise of your impatience (and frustration in what you feel is a no answer) from your questions.

We all do this.
But it doesn't yeild answers.

"Be still and know that I am God ..."

Anonymous said...

Maybe he isn't telling you because he's waiting for you to find it within yourself. Faith is not my usual area of expertise, but I know that this funk you find your life in is not permanent. It'll clear up -- soon, too. You're a strong, smart young lady. You'll find His voice again if that's what you're looking for. Promise!

P.s. I'm so glad I found your blog! Thanks for your comment on mine. It means so much to me!

Anonymous said...

It is very interesting for me to read the blog. Thanx for it. I like such themes and everything that is connected to this matter. I definitely want to read more on that blog soon.

Sheila said...

Thank you Mallory, I really needed this encouragement right now. :-)