Freedom to Choose the Journey

in-his-heart-man-plans-his-courseImage Cred

All this time, I’ve been praying for closed doors. I’ve been operating out the theology that there’s only one right way/path/decision to make as far as career (and everything else for that matter) is concerned. Sometimes it would have seemed that I had no options and other times several fabulous options. I would pray What’s the RIGHT one? #oldestchildsyndrome #perfectionist

I also figured that I if I finally understood what the correct choice/path was, then I would have less of an opportunity to fail. #afraidoffailure

Until this morning, while the husband was reading the girls’ devotional to them, I didn’t realize that I was living timid and bound. He read Proverbs 16:9: In his heart, a man plans his course, but the Lord establishes his steps.

I’ve heard this verse several times – it’s part of why I thought the way I thought – the Lord establishes his steps. This thought was always comforting. If the Lord is the one establishing the steps (and I’m walking with the Lord) then I don’t need to worry about the choices I make. Except…

Except it seemed that I wasn’t making any choices. I’ve been living reactionary for the past few years and wondering when the Lord was going to show me what choice I had to make. When was He going to let me know what job I should take, what population I should work with, what kind of counseling was I supposed to do? This morning though, the first part of the verse of what God gave me ears to hear: In his heart, a man plans his course…

I was cleaning the kitchen and stopped dead in my tracks as if I were hearing this verse for the first time. There was no condemnation in the fact that a man wants to plan his course. In fact, it seemed to be normal and ordained and OKAY for a man (or woman, in my case) to plan his own course. It was like I was being given permission at that moment – more than permission…freedom – to make the choice for my life. It was okay to have a passion, an opinion, a direction (as long as it isn’t contradictory to His Word, obviously). And as long as I’m walking in step with Christ, being present with Him daily, He will guide my steps as I work my plan.

This comes with a different set of disciplines and faith. Instead of sitting on the sidelines and watching, waiting for God to tell me what to do, I need to take action with Him. This means diligent prayers. Diligent Bible reading. Discipline. Decisiveness.

So this is what freedom and free-will is all about. Well, it’s not what it’s all about, but it’s a part I didn’t give receive until today. He made me – and you – unique. We have gifts, interests, personality styles, perspectives, and so much more that no one else has. These do not need to be compromised when using them for both career and Christ. It’s like I thought giving up “myself” meant giving up my personality. Not true! This morning He spoke to me and said “I want you to follow your desires as you walk with me. I want you and I to walk with each other as you start this journey. Be teachable. Keep peace. Love others. But stay focused. It makes Me smile when you are chasing your dreams with Me.”

So here we go!