At exactly 7 minutes before the lovely bride was to walk down the aisle, I realized I should run to the restroom. It was a building I had never been to before, but as I turned around I saw the tiny bathroom sign toward the back of the open space, I told my people I would be right back.
I placed my hand on the doorknob and opened it to see the entire selection of groomsmen on the other side of the door.
Many of you quick-witted friends of mine would know exactly what to say in such a scenario to make that a laughable experience. I, on the other hand, with eyes as big as saucers and mouth agape, stood there for approximately 0.5 seconds, said nothing then shoved the door closed and speed-walked back to my seat.
I may have never moved so fast in all my life. Except those times I’ve shoved a direction from the Holy Spirit right out of my mind. I can do that pretty quickly.
A thousand times in my life I have felt a nudge from the Holy Spirit to do something – send the card, make the phone call, set up the lunch date – and just as quickly as I turned around from that bathroom, the idea that just entered my mind will leave. The card doesn’t get sent, the call doesn’t get made, and there is no lunch. All my good intentions are blown away like a napkin from a picnic table, never to be seen again. I am not proud of this, but am hoping you will join me in this time of confession, letting me know I am not the only one.
This sort of thing will leave me feeling like a big, fat failure, and happens more times than I care to admit. Sometimes the feeling comes from following through with something I was pretty sure God has asked me to do, but somewhere along the way feeling certain this isn’t the thing He is asking of me right now. It leaves me wondering if I heard Him wrong to start with, or if that particular calling for my life was for a temporary season, or – worst of all – that I tried it but God must have decided I wasn’t good at it after all. I am gifted at being dramatic.
Sometimes my attitude is the problem. I will do whatever it is I am asked/called to do, but my attitude is clearly not of someone who is on a mission from God.
All of this will leave me briefly wondering if God looks at me as a disappointment. I know I am not alone in this, as a friend just told me last night that she feels this way right now.
It’s funny how I work super hard to find scripture and truth that can prove to others that these crummy feelings aren’t valid at all, but when it is myself feeling this way, I tend to wallow.
I’ve recently read through the book of Job, and learned some stuff about him that might help you as well. I had always credited him for going through hard things and never losing faith and staying strong through the whole thing. But I will challenge you to read the entire book if you haven’t. It was such a comfort to me to see this man who did not handle it perfectly, who complained, felt deserted, and cursed his very birth, still be used and blessed by God.
And what did God say about him? “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” (1:8)
God, who knew how this was going to go, sees Job as blameless and upright. He sees him as a man who will stick it out, even when it is hard. A man who is going to get whiny beginning in chapter 3, who is going to feel forsaken, and who begins to question his very Maker – God has said there is no one on earth like him.
God knows we are going to mess up, but He is our Father who will guide us through it. It might require putting us in our place like it did for Job in chapters 38-41, but He will continue holding on to us, redirecting our failures and bad attitudes, and loving us through it all. He is a good Father.
“The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.
Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the Lord holds them by the hand.”