stories about life and God

this is the gist of my "flight."

i hate the bumper stickers that say “God is my copilot.” i love the ones that say “if God is your copilot, switch seats!”
yesterday i was thinking about planes(i don’t know where it came from either), and then i thought of my life.
and i’m not sure either of those bumper stickers makes sense.
i think that we’re like pilots without licenses. we’re in the cockpit and everything, but we have the best pilot ever sitting with us telling us exactly where to go and what to do and how to do it. sometimes we don’t get why He’s giving us certain directions, but if we follow them, then we see eventually. sometimes the sky is clear and it’s so easy to navigate that we feel like we’ve got this and we forget to listen. sometimes it’s foggy, or storming, and we get really crazy sounding directions and don’t want to do them. but the sooner you follow them, the sooner you get out of the storm.

my life makes a lot of sense. because God was there for the whole thing.
here’s what happened.
when i was seven, God told my dad to move us to south carolina and work at ciu. so he did. it was real hard on most of my family(i remember being excited about the warm weather, and having air conditioning, and being closer to myrtle beach, and i don’t remember missing virginia much at all), and i remember them all not always understanding why we had to go.

that was so that ciu would be a part of my life for a long time.

as i got older, i said i would never EVER go to school there, even though it was practically free. see older posts of mine for my ridiculous reasons.
when i was sixteen[almost seventeen since it was summer], i met ashleigh newell and she told me about csu. a few months later i felt God calling me there. more loudly than i’d ever heard him call before. so a year later, i went.
you know the story. it was and is my idea of hell on earth. while i was there, i didn’t understand what God was trying to do. but just like Job, He just had to keep letting more and more crap into my life until i figured it out.
spring of 2010 rolled around and i discovered that since i was failing half my classes, i wouldn’t be able to afford to come back the next year. my family jumped on this and said i could go to ciu the next year. i was NOT happy with God. i started begging Him to give me a way to stay at csu. anything to not have to go to ciu. yes, i wanted that bad to not come here.
God said no.

that[the bad stuff that happened that year] was to show me how good i could have it at ciu.

in may, i started applying. as i got the essay(600 words on why i wanted to go to school there), i almost decided to live at home and work for a year then go back to charleston. i thought i would have to completely BS the whole thing. so i started doing just that. i started mentioning things that i thought other people liked about the school, reasons why other people might feel God leading them to go there, and as i wrote, my heart started shifting. i remember i was in the car on the way to north carolina writing it on the back of an old flyer for some youth group thing. i stopped midsentence, and laughed out loud. i realized that i actually MEANT everything i was writing. i DID want a small school where i would know everyone, i DID want teachers who cared about me and were committed to Christ, and i DID think that God would grow me and teach me here more than anywhere else. (i was so excited i ended up writing a whole other page and had to edit it down to 600 words)

that was to show me that God really did want good things for me, even when i didn’t always realize it.

then in the middle of that summer, i called my mom one tuesday night from camp and asked if i had gotten accepted yet.
she didn’t have good news.
remember how i sucked at life and didn’t do all that well at the other place? it didn’t look so good to ciu. they sent me a letter saying that they couldn’t accept me because i didn’t meet the academic requirements, but they were sending my application to be appealed.
i didn’t get it. i had finally WANTED to go, and now God wasn’t letting me. i talked to someone that night about it, probably jenna but i can’t remember who exactly, and they said “wow, and i thought you hadn’t even wanted to go that bad, and now you’re begging God to find you a way to go?”(not in a mean way. they were just surprised at how much i had changed)

that was God showing me just how much i really did want it.

obviously i did get accepted eventually.
and from all that, i have yet another testimony of romans 8:28. God took all of these potentially bad things, and in the end He guided them so they turned out more absolutely perfect beyond anything i could have imagined for my life.
a lot of times i think about what i would do if i were given the chance to go back, knowing how it would all turn out. would i go to ciu my freshman year?
no. i wouldn’t. because there was a little more to it than just showing me how bad other places are.

that was because God planned, the whole time, for me to come in at this time, with this group of people. to be on this hall, with these girls. everything would have been different if i’d come last year. it would have been good, but it wouldn’t have been the best.

every little detail had a purpose. and EVERYTHING turned out exactly how God wanted it. nothing happened by accident, and nothing could have gone differently and still turned out the way things did. He didn’t want me to just have it good. He gave me the best. the who-even-knew-this-level-of-perfect-existed, best.
all because He just plain loves me. how crazy is THAT?
my life is so beautiful. and it’s barely even started.

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