Monday, October 5, 2009

The Times When God Leaves Us

I have just been dealing with a week from hell. All the circumstances that surrounded us was just something too big for us to handle, eventually leaving me feeling so exhausted and weary. My husband and I were hoping and praying to start over in Houston, TX. All this time we have been accumulating problems and debts as we travelled from one place to another the entire 3 years we were in the states. Having passed his NCLEX-RN, we thought that everything would be a lot easier now that there will be two of us working. We were at least looking forward to paying all our debts and settling down in a place where we can raise up our kids.

I have always believed that God shapes our circumstances and that His sovereignty never fails in ALL the situations we face in this life. Our faith, though, comes face to face with fire to test the very heart of us. This is exactly what happened in my first couple of months in Houston. Having relocated to TX without our car was one tough situation to be in. It was never easy getting started with a job without having your own transportation. I was so blessed to have an uncle who was willing enough to lend his car (after allowing me to stay with them) for me to use to work for now. But it wasn't easy to have to work at a clinic that's about 25 miles away from where we are. It takes 50 miles back and forth for me to get to and from work. On top of that, we also needed to use my uncle's car for Ryan's drug screening and interviews and all. It was too much travel for my uncle's car to go through and I really understood his concern when he saw we've put in about 700 miles already in just a few weeks. My uncle's car is an oldie and it's his only reliable transportation to work. He has been saving mileage to make sure it would last until the time he can really afford to get a new one.

All this time we were trying to find ways to get a transportation of our own, but every single way we take leaves us hanging and empty in the end. There was no way we could get even a second-hand car because of our credit scores, nor can we rent one. (We've been trying to stretch our last $50 before I get my first salary this coming friday!) The pressure of not being able to work because of not having a reliable transportation left us feeling so helpless. Not to mention the kids are so far away from us and our baby girl was sick (again) and that their nanny's going to leave for good and --- !!!! We're standing between a rock and a hard place!

It wasn't until I heard the sermon last Sunday that God had made the reasons clear as to why He's allowed us to experience all this. Pastor Sonny of First Baptist Church in Pearland, TX talked about Isaiah 40:3-5. It wasn't until he said that all these shall come to pass before the glory of God be manifested in our lives that every dust settled. I knew all along that God was in control, but my faith was stale and waning away that I doubted and panicked if He was really going to see us through. I knew He was bigger than our circumstances but my heart was filled with a lot of worries that His sovereignty was no longer my only priority.

The sermon last Sunday talked about leveling our lives... Preparing a highway for the Lord. Making low all the mountains and high places, straightening crooked ways and smoothing rough edges. I have all that. I was surrounded by mountains of bitterness and anger and frustrations and pride. I had so many crooked paths in my life that I still tend to use a a detour when problems arise. My very heart was still so rough around the edges that God needs to smoothen it out before his glory (and grace) be seen in my life!

The passage I read this morning from John MacArthur's Truth for Today was hitting the nail on the head. 2 Chronicles 32:31 was the time when the bible tells us that God LEFT King Hezekiah alone to deal with some Babylonian rulers. After all his success in every aspect in life, this time God decided to leave him alone in order to TEST HIS HEART. I believe this is what God has been doing all this time to me. Testing my heart. Not that He doesn't know what's in it, because he is omniscient, He knows the very core of me already. But He does all this to let ME see the very heart of me. Unless I will let myself be pruned and molded and unless I will humbly look into my very own heart and acknowledge what's in there, God can never do any revival in it, nor can I ever see his glory manifest in me.

It wasn't until I heard Him through all His words that it made sense why we had to go through all the trials and tests. God is sovereign and He is the one who gives and takes away. His name is to be blessed ALWAYS! Not just in happy, full days but in trying and empty days as well. God is still sovereign. He has been all this time. And I praise Him for times when He leaves us to test us... I love it when He works mysteriously in our lives to WEAN US FROM THE WORLD. He always redirects our focus to Him, making sure we wean ourselves off of wrong priorities. Blessed be the name of the LORD!!!

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