Turn Your Eyes

Or as I sang all weekend, "Fix your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace."

I might have had the words wrong, but God placed this hymn inspired by scripture on my heart last Thursday night. As some may know {but most do not}, I had started the application process for the apprentice/career path through the IMB, and this past weekend was a expo/interview to pretty much determine if we were what they were looking for to serve long term. I was a nervous wreck all week long. No joke. My stomach felt like I had pterodactyls flying around.

Side note: {list of stupid things I did}
Unknowingly spilled my pumpkin spice latte down the front of my white shirt.
Walked completely into a men's restroom before I realized it was the wrong one.
Continued to take a picture in my still stained shirt which I had not noticed yet.
Looked down to see the orange splotched all over my shirt and had to keep my jacket buttoned all night long.
Almost knocked over the rest of my latte with my arm because I was talking too animatedly.
At the end of the night, I dropped all of my belongings behind my chair where I couldn't reach them with things falling out of my planner left and right.
Let's just say, it could only go up from there.

Back to the original story. Sparing you a whole lot of details, I'll sum it all up in these few words: I already had a plan. Be on the field in two years or less. This was just a stepping stone.

I went home Thursday night thinking the whole night was a bit rocky due to my accident-prone ways, but Friday had to go as planned.

Nope. Not a chance.
{luckily for me there were no more incidents with coffee or bathrooms}

Instead God had totally different plans for me to discover. I've known since I was a little girl that God wants me overseas, but I have really been struggling with a lack of peace over to go now, wait, or whatever. Needless to say, I just knew God was gonna give me the clarity I needed to just keep on going forward. Negative. Through a long series of events that I would love to share in person over some coffee {preferably not on my shirt} I would love to explain further, God very clearly impressed on my heart that He wants me to wait. That is not what I wanted to hear, and I definitely fought him on it for a good hour or so.

But ultimately, I was surrounded by 6 single females who were all at least 2 years older if not 7 or 8 years older and who were so mature in their faith. I have never felt so inadequate. But in a way, that God had to use these phenomenal women to show me how much growing I needed to do. They were all so full of Godly wisdom that I needed to hear. They were all so encouraging to me and so very genuine in their struggles and victories. God knew exactly what He was doing by placing me there this past weekend.

At first I couldn't understand why God would have me start this process if He didnt intend for me to finish it, but I finally got it through my thick skull that I had to see for myself that I wasn't ready and that God has a lot of work to do on me.

I'm so thankful that He spoke to me so clearly and used those girls in my life to shape me into what He wants me to be. God has plans for me that I can't see right now, but I am trusting Him to show me exactly where it is He wants me. I know one thing for sure: He wants me to me more bold in sharing my faith in my circle of influence. So feel free to hold me accountable for that. I'm giving you permission. It's time for me to grow up and stop hiding behind my pride and self-confidence issues. Enough is enough. God wants all of me. Not part of me. It's all or nothing. I'm surrendering over all that I have. I count it all as loss compared to knowing and serving Him.

Now back to the hymn. I'm so thankful God placed this song in my heart. It's no surprise that I am distracted so easily from everything. It's actually pretty sad. Y'all all know my weakness when it comes to Christian conferences, so as the attack came at me, I just started singing in my head {wrong words and all}. Now just two days later, I still am singing that song and reminding myself to keep focusing on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my faith. When I am focused on Him, the things of earth {i.e. marriage, dating, popularity, weight, looks, money, etc} grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace. I am not looking ahead to the future. Where my time spent there is futile. Nothing I dream up or imagine is real life and it only serves as a hindrance to God working in my life. I am not looking behind at the pain, the mistakes, or the memories which only hold me back from God's plans today. I am focusing my eyes on Jesus where they belong.

Praise God that He's not done working on me. I'm always a work in progress.

Learning to be the light,