This week I have been stretched and challenged in ways I didn't know were coming or even meant for me. Do you ever feel like you are at peace with your schedule? For the first time in a long time I did not open my planner and scribble appointments and highlight time slots, I didn't make lists or even really even care to know where my beloved timekeeper was laying. All I know is that last week the last two years of my life were wiped clean off my computer and I spent hours trying to recover memories and work.
I'm also weeks deep into one Bible study and was asked by several people to do Seamless by Angie Smith. It was almost a kicking and screaming deal when I was added to an online group for the study. I just didn't have time for another study, plus I was thoroughly enjoying Angela Thomas' study Stronger. Not only that, I have been reading a book called The Esther Anointing and carving time out for that as well. I thought "I don't have time for anything else..." Boy, was God about to show up.
Once I gave up on my computer ever finding the missing files I decided that all the work I had put on it must be lost for a reason. The one big project I lost was my book, my own Bible study. Yes I blogged it years ago and it is still there but it's a mess. I literally just wrote what God laid on my heart for 40 days and studied. I was in a different place spiritually with growing to do and more hurdles to over come. But there it was and there it's been.
A year ago a reader sent me the study in a book format that I could edit and put online for easy download. I was amazed that someone took the time to do that for me. God is amazing. He was clearly using another faithful follower to encourage me. However, that too was gone. My heart was broken and my hands were in the air and I was trying to be "stronger" while being asked to do another study. I was a little miffed at my circumstances and had a "I give up" mentality. Then something happened that turned things around. I believe in divine appointments, I believe when you have God's favor He moves others in His army to assist you. I received another email.
I opened up my email casually, not expecting anything new or exciting and found that someone took a moment out of their day to bless my socks off. A stranger, a sister, a reader of my study emailed me to tell me that after reading "Power of a Praying Wife" she was looking for something more and had pinned my study on Pinterest. Her passionate email about loving my study struck a heart string. Oh, God what are your doing? If it is this powerful for someone in the raw. Imagine what You could do with it if it were polished and published.
I prayed. The next day when I was added to the online study group I huffed for a minute, squinted my eyes, and conceded. Within the hour I was on my way to buy the book. God was clearly trying to tell me something. What I have found is that both studies are stretching me in different ways. Seamless is gentle and slow and will guides me through God's Word with care. Stronger has exposed my fragile places, made me dig deep and reflect on my weaknesses where God is strongest. My study...that mess of a study. It just needed a plan.
While walking one morning I was listening to Jon Acuff's book Do Over. At first I wasn't connecting because I wasn't looking for a do over. But that was the same day of the email. That's when I realized there was a do over. I went from my walk "with Jon" to my boys school and was highly anxious to get home after volunteering there. Jon mentioned "note cards", my white board needed cleaning, where are my post it notes, and I needed to dig out the hard copy of my study.
Let it begin! Over the next 48 hours I went to the drawing board, to my study, to my note cards, back to the drawing board and so on. I have no idea what I'm doing.
It feels right. All the ideas, notes, rearranging of texts, reorganizing 40 days of study, building of concepts, studying more, praying, it is all so raw and new but clearly God wasn't done with my work. So for the last few days I have been doing what my husband suggested "treat this book like it's your job". The result has been quite amazing. My breaks away from my office were spent tiding the house and doing laundry or running. The rest has been spent treating my time with my book like it is my job.
Do I question what's going on?
Do I wonder if this will ever pay me like a job?
Am I curious as to what its ultimate fate will be?
The bottom line is I have no clue what God is up to. I have a feeling that when I finally finish I'm going be all "here you go God I'm done!" As if I'm going to toss the transcript on His desk and watch it slide to a halt and His finger tips and walk away humbly and tired. This has been a kicking and screaming, I don't want to do this type project for a long time. I have finally relented and am being obedient and thoroughly enjoy the process so far. I might be doing it all wrong but I'm doing it. What I am anxious to see is what He will actually do with it.
I have no idea...
Whatever He had planned that I can not yet see, this is my current assignment.