Over the past few weeks, since I started attending a new women's Bible study and diving in the Word so many things have been happening.
It started a little into our study of "Blessed Is She" based on Luke 1:45, "Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!"
I like to consider myself to be someone with strong faith and courage, like Esther. But I find myself being more of a Thomas--a doubter. One week during our study we wrote lies we sometimes believe onto the back of 3x4 cards, and then the truths on the other side. My lie was: "God will not follow through on His promises." It didn't take long for me to forget what I had written and just move one, but I find that lie still lingering.
Every week, we elected a different girl to be prayed for, and despite being new to this group, I was chosen rather quickly. We would pray for the person and the Bible passage they had chosen as their promise from God for 2015. Mine was Micah 7:5-7, "Do not trust a neighbor; put no confidence in a friend. Even with her who lies in your embrace be careful of your words... But as for me, I watch in hope for the LORD, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me." I felt so blessed to hear the girls' prayers, words, and pictures God brought to their mind for me.
A week later, I visited my friend's charismatic church. (Just know, if you ever visit a charismatic church, you WILL hear from God. lol.) Sometimes I feel skeptical of prophecies, and tongues can make me feel uncomfortable at times, but I also believe in a God of miracles and that nothing is impossible with Him.
Anyways, I missed the whole worship set because of traffic and taking the wrong exit... whoops! And mid-sermon got distracted by a text message from a very good college friend of mine who happened to be in town at that exact moment and wanted to meet up. I was enjoying the lesson thoroughly but couldn't pass up the opportunity to see a close friend I hadn't seen in over a year. The service had just ended and the prayers were calling up people they believed God was speaking to that night. I was waiting for a last text to tell me where to meet, when suddenly one of the girls pointed straight into the pews at me. I had to disconnect myself from my phone and listen to what God wanted to say. Wandering up to the front, I felt afraid and nervous. In the moment, everything was a blur. There were so many distractions: my phone I left on the pew, the hands on my shoulders and back, the dizzy and light sensation I was feeling, the occasional person praying in tongues. When I returned to my seat, my phone had a missed call and text. My friend's phone had died. I had almost missed God's reason for me being there that night. After the service, another girl approached me and gave me another word. It's hard to explain what exactly were her words and what happened, but it touched my soul and cut through fears I was holding onto tightly.
Growing up in a conservative non-denominational church, the Holy Spirit and supernatural was kind of a subject swept under the rug. Nobody really mentioned it, but there was no denying this and saying it was all made up. These people did not know me at all and yet spoke into my life about areas that I needed to know that God had not abandoned. The craziest thing was that the words aligned perfectly with what the girls at my Bible study had also prayed and spoke over me. And many of the words overlapped with things God had been telling me individually as well.
I wish hearing from God made things easier. But it hasn't, it just gives hope. It still is hard to hear when God blesses others and my dreams seem to be rotting away. It fills me with jealousy and anger, things I don't want to feel, like abandonment, like I'm being lied to. Can God? Will God really follow through on His promises? I recalled to my father today everything the pastor spoke during the sermon that Saturday, how we are made strong in our weaknesses, so that God can be exalted, rather than ourselves. I then handed him the old set of house keys my mother had randomly just given to me. They came with a key chain reading, "God keeps his promises." We both quietly chuckled over the coincidence. When I opened up my daily devotion minutes later, 2 Corinthians 12:9a was written at the top, "But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness'."
Coincidence or God?