Have you ever felt like it was “your turn”, but things just weren’t going your way? Editor Miranda shares her struggle with her pride of being “a good catch,” but not seeing fruits developing the way she had wanted or expected.
Tonight I spoke these words to someone – “I feel like I’m a good catch.”
I was talking about how I had never thought I’d be one of the last in my groups and circles of girlfriends… to get engaged. I said, “Maybe it’s a pride thing.” Meaning, that it wounded my pride to know that everyone around me was “chosen” and it was “their time” but not mine yet.
But I was reminded tonight that it’s not about the things that I can list off about myself that I have grown accustomed to being proud of. My outside appearance and beauty. My career. My independence. My love for the Lord. My commitment to the ministries I serve in. My family and my amazing friends and social circles. My fashion sense, my possessions, my ever-bulging closet. The list can go on and on and on.. but I realized tonight that it’s truly not about any of these things.
First of all, where did all these things come from? Was it from my own strength, wisdom, hard work… maybe even just pure luck? Some might argue yes. But as a believer of Christ, knowing and seeing so clearly the footprint that my Father has left on my life and how His hand has guided me in and through every twist and turn, there is no question that all these blessings came directly from Him.
To those who might disagree, I’d like to share an example… If I prayed for a job and I was hired, was it me or was it God? Let’s assume that God didn’t actually “intervene”. But there is still the fact that because of God’s teaching and discipline, I am the person I am today, with the work ethics that I portray. It is also because of Him that I know how to be a moral person. It is also because of God’s grace that I have the talents and abilities that I have in order to take on this job. Even if God didn’t directly intervene, I can never claim that I got this job solely on my own because it just wouldn’t be true.
James 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”
Just as He loves to shower all of His children with love and blessings, God was generous enough to bless me with all those things I listed above, and so much more. But as I sat there in that restaurant, staring at my half eaten crepe, trying to explain why I felt like a good catch, I felt shallow and empty and I wasn’t sure why.
As I tried to untangle these thoughts and feelings I didn’t quite understand, I started to realize that I felt absolutely no confidence or pride in the words that came out of my mouth because in the end, none of these worldly things have brought me true satisfaction, joy, or have fulfilled any of my deepest desires. Tonight I was humbled as I was reminded that nothing I have or hold on to on this Earth means anything really… and I have that undeniable answer right smack in front of my face – It isn’t my beauty or my success or my material possessions that has granted me a perfect relationship or fiancé or husband… in fact, I can claim to have none of the above.
1 John 2:16 “For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world.”
Luke 12:15 “And [Jesus] said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”
So am I really such a great catch? Maybe not so much… maybe it’s not so much about those worldly achievements I hold so tightly in my hand, as it is about coming to the Lord with a humble heart and knowing that God will give me what He deems best for me, whenever is best for me. It does hurt to answer this question honestly, but I know it’s a part of God revealing Himself to me, and peeling the layers of my pride in order to discipline me into the woman of God that He intends for me to be. It’s painful, but it’s worth it.
Secondly, I know that God has a great reason as to why He’s holding me where I am in terms of singleness. I realize that I am not the one to say if I’m “ready” or not. Tonight during this conversation I stated that I felt ready, and in some sense, I do believe that I am. But in another, maybe I just don’t know if I’m ready or not, because every time I feel that I am in a great place and ready for the next step, a curve ball is thrown my way and I’m forced to reassess myself and reflect on my messy heart. So today I’ve decided to just go ahead and give my readiness up to God, because He is the only one who knows. My thoughts, my feelings, the people around me, the situations that we all face… all these things are so unstable and ever-changing from day to day, hour to hour, minute to minute. The only thing I can count on to remain stable is the undeniable unchanging truth that the Lord will take care of me, guide me, and bless me as He sees fit.
In personal reflection: Truthfully I am not sure what the future holds, especially for this next coming 2012. I have this feeling that it’s going to be a big year… but that’s kind of what I said last year too. Well, I guess it HAS been a big year. A lot has happened. And I’ve definitely learned so much all by the grace of God. But no matter what is up ahead, I have comfort knowing that nothing I build up on this Earth, including my bodily appearance, my material possessions, my achievements, my career, my service to the community… these things are great and they may give me a momentary sense of purpose and identity, but in the big scheme of things within the Kingdom of Heaven, they are SO trivial and meaningless. The Lord has reminded me that it’s not the works that I do that warrant the love and grace and blessings that He bestows upon me.. Because He gladly gives me those things in His perfect timing if ONLY because He loves me and wants to give me the best gifts possible. Not because I have earned it or because I deserve it on any sort of level.. because truthfully, I haven’t and I don’t.
I will wait for you, Father. I will trust in you Lord. Thank you.
Ephesians 2:8-9 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.