Life. Is anyone’s life turning out the way you envisioned it five years ago? Tonight as Leadership Advantage (this big leadership conference our church does every year) ended and I was taking out the trash (I know, I get the good jobs) I did some reflecting on my life. Actually, I was trying to convince Keao that we had the same birthday just on different years and that I was turning 28 on the same day that she will turn 25. But that Keao, she’s so clever, you gotta wake up pretty early in the morning to fool Keao, she saw right through my ploy and nicely told me that I was already 25 (a fact that I guess she thought escaped me, silly Keao). Anyway, I told her that I never thought I’d make it to 28. It’s not that I have some fatalistic attitude or anything, it’s just that when you’re a kid, 28 is so far away and you think you’ll never make it there. But now, sitting on the 30 side of 28, it has really made me think.
At the beginning of this year I distinctly heard God tell me that this would be a tough year. But, he said (that’s what I love about God, there’s always a but), get through it because something fantastic is waiting ahead. Well, as the first six months of the year went by, things were going pretty smoothly. The next three got much tougher. By tougher I mean I was really discouraged and many things took place. There isn’t any one thing that made it tough, more a culmination of things. That brings me to now. With just a little under three months left in the year there are days when I don’t think I’m going to make it. It wears on you. It’s one thing to set your eyes on a prize and race toward it. It’s another to race towards the finish line and not know what to expect. There may be a great prize or there may be another race (which at this point would probably kill me). Who knows? Well God. This is where my faith comes in.
Tonight I got to pray with a guy whose car just got broken into. He is pretty bummed because so many things got stolen. I don’t blame him. I would probably feel the same way. But as I was praying, the verse “walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7) jumped into my head. I said this to encourage him, but it ended up encouraging me as well. See, I already know this verse and have told it to many people before, but for some reason it really clicked to me. There are many things that I see around me that frustrate me and God has told me to take care of it (although many times I do it begrudgingly). So like anybody else, I whine, complain and gripe about it…then I do it (note to self: take care of that crappy attitude while you’re at it). Anyway (or as my sister would say, anyroads) God also told me something else this week too. This pertains to my year as well as my life. He asked me, “why do you think you are where you are?” He then told me about the Israelites and their journey through the desert to the Red Sea. Why were the Israelites stuck between the Red Sea and the charging Egyptians? Ready for this? They were there because God led them there. God literally led them between the Red Sea and the Egyptians. If you don’t believe me look it up for yourself in Exodus 13-14. Being in a hard spot was exactly God’s plan for them. So I have to believe that I am where I am because God led me there.
Finally, as we were praying during Leadership Advantage my prayer partner Malialani prayed something else encouraging. She prayed to encourage me that I was in God’s plan and that it was more than I could know right now (man, the Spirit was flowing tonight!). So here I am trying to finish off the year and finish the race strong. So if anyone wants to agree with me in prayer for the next three months I sure would appreciate it.