Have you ever had a bad day? A bad week? A bad year? Have you ever felt so lost you weren’t sure which way was up anymore? Have you ever felt like your world was crashing down and God was nowhere to be found?
If you answered “yes” to any or all the above, I am here to give you hope.
The first time I remember feeling a desperate need for direction was when I woke up on life support in the ICU. I found out I had been the victim of a drunk driver – one that had also claimed the lives of my then-girlfriend and her older sister. I remember staring at the clock in the middle of the night, listening to the beeping sound of the life support machine. I was only 16 and had no clue what my future would look like. Would I even be able to function the same due to my severe injuries? Only time would tell.
I Don’t Know
Over the years, I have come to call this the “I Don’t Know Effect.” It happens when a “way” no longer seems present, when all the doors seem shut, when the rescue line appears to have been cut. It feels like the heavens shut and the voice of God goes silent. It seems like no choice is a good choice, but feeling directionless no good either. Solitude feels the same whether you are alone or in a room full of people. Life seems to have forgotten you exist.
When faced with decisions during this time, all you can think is “I don’t know … ”
What I know now that I did not know before is that “I don’t know” isn’t being totally lost; instead, it’s like coming to a crossroads. It is the unspoken land that lies ahead of you, but it is also a slate made clean, an empty canvas ready for artistry. The “I don’t know” is growth, not desperation or despair. It is the unseen and unspoken force of God’s love pulling on the greatest things inside of you.
Trusting God with all your heart and leaning not on your own understanding is hard! But I promise you, He is a master way-maker. When the detour takes you down an unknown path, He has already delivered provisions up ahead.
While the Lord never creates disaster, destruction or storms in our lives, He absolutely uses them to shape and mold us. In the moment, when the fires have been turned up seven times hotter, you won’t feel like you can see. It’s hard to breathe when it gets that hot. But there is another person standing in the furnace with you. And if you hold on, the fires do subside, and the skies do clear.
His Light, Our Learning
It took me a while to finally start realizing what the “I don’t know” could do for me. I learned that the whole premise of faith is taking steps when I don’t see a way. It is brutally uncomfortable, but it also gives me a reason to trust in God. Because if I am going to live the Jesus-filled life, I need to learn to trust His voice. I firmly believe God is speaking more than we are usually listening. There are always clues to something. It may just take time to investigate and seek them out.
Moments of uncertainty are far from enjoyable, but when we shift our focus to God’s direction, we are well on our way to discovery. Ask questions you have never asked yourself before. Seek the direction of God’s voice. And if all else fails, let your heart lead you where your head can’t fit. Because sometimes understanding isn’t on this side of the mountain. I am living proof that the answers do come. The waves do calm. Never give up.
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