October 13, 2016
Where I Really Fall Short
“LORD, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago.” Isaiah 25:1 (NIV)
Can I admit something to you on this cold fall day? It’s not pretty. It’s not something I’m proud of. And it’s certainly not something I want highlighted about my life. But, I must share just in case it might help you: Sometimes I struggle trusting God with my kids. There’s just something so hard about this for me. Though I say it with my mouth and I posture my attitude to give off the appearance of complete trust, when it comes down to the nitty-gritty of fully living like I trust God with my kids, I fall short. I worry. I get incredibly anxious. I make lots of suggestions to God on their behalf. I try to keep things in their world calm, free of hurt and on track toward some “best plan” I’ve imagined for them. It’s like I gather up my people in my arms and tell God, “See? I’ve got it all worked out. Now, if You’ll just bless all this. Don’t mess with it, just bless it. And life will be good.” Like I said, I’m not proud of this.
I could go on a little tangent right here and justify the great love of a mother and how God has woven into our very DNA this fierce desire to protect our young and care for them at all costs. But there’s this little prick in my heart because I know how very limited my efforts are. In every way my efforts are faulty and fragile. Therefore, I’m learning, slowly, how to grab hold of the only plan that is foolproof with my kids — truly entrusting them to the Lord. The very best thing a mom can ever do is to recognize only God is good at being God. I’m finally getting this. And it’s helping me get out of His way. For example, if it were up to me, my daughter Ashley would have never ever gone to the college she chose. I could give you a list a mile long why she should absolutely, positively, never ever, under any circumstances go to that school. But God.
He had a plan I never could have imagined. He had a woman behind the scenes whom I didn’t even know at the school praying for my daughter. He had friends waiting to love her. He had small group leaders waiting to show her how to have a real relationship with Jesus. He had a church family waiting to become one of the most favorite parts of her life. And He had a young man with the biggest heart and cutest hair you ever did see waiting to fall in love with her and make her a preacher’s wife. When she left for college, I couldn’t have seen any of this. I couldn’t have imagined any of this. I couldn’t even sense the tiniest part of any of this. That’s why it’s crucial for me to trust God. Because heaven knows He is much better at arranging things than I am. My best job as a mom is to be obedient to God. God’s job is everything else.
I must trust Him to lead me as I lead them to trust Him. I know that’s a mouthful. But honestly, the best way to protect my kids is to show them what it looks like to trust God for themselves. Almost two years to the day that I sat on my bed crying about my daughter going to this college so far away, I watched her walk down the aisle to marry a young man I love. A young man she met because she walked in God’s plan. And His plan was so very good. His plan hasn’t been without ups and downs. But through it all, God really showed me how much better He is at arranging life than I am. And He has moved me to a place where Isaiah 25:1 is truly the cry of my heart:
“Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago.” Yes. God is good. And only God is good at being God. Father God, You know all of the things I desperately want to control. I’m scared but today I’m ready to give You these areas and walk in trust. I know You won’t arrange things according to my plan. And I’m actually thankful for that. Because I finally recognize Your plan will be so much better. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY: Proverbs 19:21, “You can make many plans, but the LORD’s purpose will prevail.” (NLT)
Isaiah 46:9, “Remember the things I have done in the past. For I alone am God! I am God, and there is none like me.” (NLT)
RELATED RESOURCES: Have you ever felt suspicious of God? Doubting His goodness? Questioning whether or not He wants to be good to you? You aren’t alone. Lysa TerKeurst shares her own personal journey of discovering God’s goodness in the midst of heartbreak in her new book, Uninvited. A book that will help equip you to approach each day knowing God is good, God is good to you and God is good at being God. You can order your copy here.
There’s also a six-session Uninvited Bible study that would be a great fit for any small group. Find out how to get started here.
REFLECT AND RESPOND: What’s one area of your life that you can prayerfully hand over to the Lord today?
© 2016 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.
Originally published Thursday, 13 October 2016.