For as long as I can remember, I was looking for a way out. A way to escape, an opportunity to explore, a chance to be free.
What was I trying to escape from? What did I want to explore? Why did I feel like I was locked and bound?
What made me want to leave?
The surface-level answer I told myself comforted me while giving me permission to search for an open door to exit the lukewarm life I was living. I listened to my own reasoning my entire life, but then something changed – everything that I thought I knew suddenly became everything I knew nothing about.
God had given me what I asked for, three times to be precise, yet now He was redirecting my steps back to where He wanted me to be.
It was like He pulled me aside for a Father/daughter “talk” and gently poked fun at something I said several years ago just so He could impart some fatherly wisdom onto me. Not of the “I told you so” variety but rather a hearty chuckle followed by a knowing smirk.
“My beloved, never say never!”
Those three words both prick my heart with contempt and tickle my soul with laughter. Just over five years ago, I did in fact say the powerful word, “NEVER!” Never will I return! Good riddance! I had escaped twice and there is no way I will ever go back!
“Oh, sweet child of Mine! Never say never! For saying the word ‘never’ is implying My work cannot be done. But take heart – My work is never finished and there is nothing too big that I cannot fix and nothing too broken that I cannot put back together!”
I’m paraphrasing, of course, but I believe this was the point God was trying to get across to me. Just like when Mary was told she would conceive a child by the Spirit of God…
“Nothing is impossible for God!”Luke 1:37 (CEV)
Coincidentally, or Spirit-led, whichever you prefer to believe or follow, my bible study at that time, The Quest by Beth Moore, dedicated a whole week to the story of Abraham and Sarah. I literally laughed out loud when I was reading about how Sarah had laughed at the very thought of conceiving a baby at her old age of nearly 100! I’m sure she was thinking, “never!” and “that will be the day!” and “Sure, Lord, whatever You say. I bet the next thing you’re going to show me is a pig flying in the sky!”
“I am the Lord! There is nothing too difficult for Me. I’ll come back next year at the time I promised, and Sarah will already have a son.”Genesis 18:14 (CEV)
It’s comical, really, when you think of it. How often we lower our expectations of the Great, Almighty and All-Powerful God because deep down we doubt He isn’t really as great, as mighty or as powerful as we are told to believe? We tend to put our God, the Creator of the universe, in a teeny, tiny box and limit His capabilities while slowly losing faith that He could never achieve the impossible.
I strongly believe that the Maker of the world has quite the sense of humor. We humans plan and attempt to control every little aspect of our lives while God looks down at us, most likely shakes His head, and quite possibly either bites His tongue or allows a small smile to creep on His face.
We think we have life figured out. We think we know what is best for us and our situations and so often we forget to even consult God with the desires of our heart. Instead, we take matters into our own hands or we allow God to lead us but then question where He is bringing us.
The latter is where I fall. I was the ultimate questioner during the years that spanned from 2012-2018. I never doubted God or His plan but boy did I question His motive! Why, God? Why? Why here? Why here when we should be there? Tell me, Lord, why? WHY? WHY?? WHY???
I had asked God “why” too many times to count, but I also said “never” just as much.
Never will I return to the place of deep heartache. I escaped the city of haunts and horrors, never will I go back to that spiritual torment again.
But I don’t have to revisit that season again nor do I have to repeat the dead-end cycle of fear and self-loathing. Because this time I have God at my side and His Spirit within me. His Spirit’s transforming work has impacted my soul and the imperfect progress of the sanctification process has prepared me for where I am going. In the past, I had said “never” when I didn’t believe the impossible could be made possible. I had lost all hope that my heart could not just be changed but remade. I hate to admit this, but I also lost hope that God could heal even the most deep and damaging wounds.
I write this to encourage you to never give up. Even if you tend to say “never” more times than you’d like or if you struggle to believe that the impossible can become possible, never lose faith and never doubt that all things are achievable with God. He keeps our best interests tucked away safely in His heart and He knows every tear we cry and every fear we try to hide. Trust Him, love Him, and have faith in Him.
Because with Him and through Him, all things are possible!