This weekend we had some friends come and visit. We were so busy last week trying to get the house all ready for our guests!
It was so refreshing having our friends here. My friend is from California and was my roommate when Martin and I first met. She married an amazing man of God and has been a wife for 5 months.
We talked and talked about how married life is and of our hearts for the Lord. It was so wonderful.
When they left Sunday morning, Martin told me that he was sad.
It was the first time we TRULY felt homesick. Our friends reminded us of California. Of our church. Of our family and other friends.
Some doubt started to set in.
Why are we in Alabama? Did we really move here so that Martin could work so hard, all day in the sun? Why did we leave our church to come here and not even find a church? What is it for us here in Alabama?
When I started to think of alternatives we could have moved to, the doubt became larger.
Why didn't we stay in California? We could have moved to Southern California and be working in a church. We could have stayed closer to family. Why are we here? What does God have for us in ALABAMA?
My focus was completely on all the questioning.
After some text talk with my wise mother-in-law, an encouraging facebook e-mail from a friend, and some beautiful time with the Lord I found the answer -- I don't know.
I have no true idea why God opened the doors for us to move to Alabama, but He did. He opened so many doors for us to move here smoothly. It is completely evident that the Lord's hand was in this move. I just have to trust Him.
My husband and I are learning to trust the Lord in a new way before. We are being stretched further then we have ever been stretched in our lives. We are gaining more understanding of one another as well as Our God.
Yesterday in my quiet time I was reminded of the story of Jesus walking on water.
Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, "It is a ghost!" And they cried out for fear.
But immediately Jesus spoke to them saying, "Be of good cheer! It is I, do not be afraid."
And Peter answered Him saying, "Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water."
So He said, "Come." And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus.
But when he saw that the wind of boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, "Lord, save me!"
And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?" And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.
- Matthew 14:25-33 (NKJV)
The first thing that I really noticed about this story was that both times the disciples were frightened, Jesus responded IMMEDIATELY! Once fear was present Jesus comforted them with either His voice ("Be of good cheer! It is I, do not be afraid) or with His touch (Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him). I love that Jesus will always come to us immediately.
Our pastor would often point out that the moment Peter started to sink was when he started looking at the storm around him. His focus changed from the Lord's face to the scariness that surrounded him.
We have to put our focus on God and trust that He will guide us. Not looking behind us to see what was left (a nearly sinking boat), not looking around us (the big scary storm), not looking below us (hello!? Water that is not normally walked upon!). Our lives need to be one unbroken gaze fixed upon the beauty of His face (Vicky Beeching - Captivated).
I noticed that Peter did not ask "why".
"Hey, uh, Jesus WHY don't you just calm the storm and hop in this boat and we can get back to it."
"Jesus, WHY am I walking on water, whats the point?"
"Wait a moment. WHY I am not sinking right now?"
"WHY am I the only one doing this? WHY aren't the others trying?"
I guess we really shouldn't always ask why and just follow Him
The other thing that I noticed is that Jesus said to Peter that He had little faith and asked why he doubted. Uh! Conviction right there.
Peter. Okay... Peter actually got OUT of the boat. He tried. He had enough faith to step out and start walking toward Jesus. The other disciples just stayed in the boat. But Jesus said Peter had little faith. It took some faith to step out but we need to keep growing in faith so we can walk alongside the Lord.
The last thing that I noticed in this scripture was that once they got back to the boat, the storm ceased. It stopped.
Jesus had the ability to stop the storm but instead He decided to stretch the faith of His disciples.
Now, I still do not know why God opened the doors to Alabama. I am not sure how long we will be here. I know that I miss my family and friends a lot. I get home sick from time to time and it saddens me to be missing out on family events (like my beautiful niece graduating high school).
But I have to yield to the Lord. I need to keep my eyes on Him, put my life in His hands, grow in my faith, and trust him completely.
wholly trusting, learning, and love. - Monica
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