Last year was a struggle for me. I felt stuck in a rut. I was way too busy and overcommitted yet I didn’t see what I could walk away from. I had little time or energy to do the things I needed to do for my own well-being, which left me miserable. I often found myself withdrawn, agitated, and anxious. I probably grumbled and complained more in the last year than I did during our really tough years.
It’s not that things weren’t going well. In many ways I had a great year. It just wasn’t the way I thought it should be. I struggled to understand how I am in the job that I am in (even though it is a perfect job fit for me). I kept feeling as though I should be doing something different. Something more significant. Something more purposeful. I had bought the lie that if you are not working full time in some sort of ministry capacity you are not really doing anything “important”.
Feeling as though I had been put on Plan B for my life, I lost faith in the dreams that I was once so confident and excited about. Every Monday as I drove to work my doubt and disbelief grew. I tried to make myself happy in my new norm and put all thoughts of writing aside. If anyone ever asked me about my writing I would tell them I was too busy and I was taking the school year off. It’s true, I was too busy, but the bigger truth was I was out of hope more than I was out of time.
By the time summer rolled around I had given up completely. I now had plenty of time, but no desire. I wouldn’t even think about it. That part of my life was off limits to think or talk about. Nobody seemed to understand that I had given up though. My friends continued to give me journals and cards with dream encouragements on them. Instead of saying thank you I said “Didn’t you hear? I have given up on my dreams.” My friend simply smiled and said “I haven’t”. Even my teenage kids picked out dream and faith items for my birthday all on their own. I couldn’t hide from anyone. Especially God.
About a month ago I felt led to study out the word promise in the Bible. Did you know that in the New Living Translation there are 364 scriptures that either have the word promise or are referencing a specific promise?! Do you think it is a coincidence that there is a promise verse for almost every day of the year (God must have figured we could get by on Christmas or Easter without one 🙂 If you could use all 364 promises go to biblegateway.com and search the word promise.
I have barely started on my promise word study and already I am so excited to share some of the treasures I have found. The first three things the Lord showed me all relate to reasons why there are delays in reaching our dreams. I am not going to get into them today but I will tell you this; two of the reasons are for our protection and one of them is our fault. I hope you are curious enough to stay with me over the next few days :).
Today I want you to think about some of the dreams and promises you believe God has placed in your heart. Or even take a look at a few of the 364 scriptures that talk about the promises God has spoken to us. Pick out a couple of those promises that you are in need of and then meditate on what it says in Numbers 23:19 God is not a man that He should lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through?Stand on the Word that assures us He is a promise keeper and the written and spoken promises He has over your life will be fulfilled.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your promises. Thank you for your written Word that reveals your heart towards us and gives us hope each day. Open my heart to your promises. Renew my faith and restore my hope. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Love, Grace, and A Promise Kept For Us All,