Helloo beautiful people,
Hope you all are doing fab. I know I keep apologizing for not putting up new posts as regularly as I originally intended but it seems that new things keep coming up that demand more of my attention especially the new job. It’s going okay and it’s nice to meet new people but it means I have to consider rearranging my schedule; I probably have to switch my quiet time with God from early in the morning to the evenings after work. I might also have to spend a day less than I normally would working out. However, I promise to keep this blog a priority; I’m so grateful that what I write means something to someone. I found out that there’s a French lady in Australia who reads this blog and that just blew my mind. So hello French lady in Australia and thanks ever so much for reading my blog and recommending it :-). Thanks so much everyone for the love, comments and questions and please keep them coming; I’ll do my best to make sure I reply.
So onto what’s on my heart to discuss today…..I find myself getting quite tired these days especially since I started this new job and the one thing that keeps coming to my mind is the fact that I prayed for this. Please don’t get me wrong; I am grateful for the fact that I have a new, good job but I remember how much I prayed about it and how much it’s taking from me now that I’m walking in the blessing of the answered prayer. It got me thinking that we often dwell so much on hoping and praying that God answers a prayer that we don’t think much about what happens after the answer to that prayer arrives. I was so wrapped in praying for that job that now I have it, it’s kinda anti-climatic cos here’s this thing I really wanted that seemed like a good and glamorous thing to get. But now that I have it, I realise that it’s actually a lot of work and not as easy as I thought it was. The most popular parallel I can draw to this situation is marriage. Now, I live in a society where there is a huge amount of pressure for women to marry (marry young and marry well) and naturally, many ladies are on their knees asking God to send them their husbands (myself included, you know I won’t front) but the thing is we often don’t think past what we would do when the guy finally arrives. Think about it ladies, what would you do if you met your spouse right this second; would you be ready to have a mature, God-centered relationship with this man? Would you be ready and willing to put in the work that goes into managing that special relationship? The more I think about this, the more the nature of my prayer in that area of my life takes on a new theme. I still pray for God to send my spouse but I pray more for God to equip me to be able to handle the responsibility that comes with that blessing. If there’s anything I’ve learned over the past two days, it’s the fact that for every answered prayer, there is a huge responsibility that comes with it which usually implies that there’s more work (and more growth) to be done.
Another thing that occurred to me was that if we could think past getting to God to answer out prayers to actually visualizing who we would be and what our lives would be like if those prayers are answered, we may not be too fervent in those prayers. I believe that there are many times that God doesn’t answer our prayers because He doesn’t want to give us a responsibility that we cannot bear. See, we often quote the bible verse that says God won’t give us more than we can bear in reference to suffering and hard times but the truth is that God won’t also give you more good things than you can handle (this bible verse is actually in reference to temptation and we are tempted by things that we find attractive i.e. the seemingly good stuff). I read a recent tweet by Heather Lindsey where she said (and I paraphrase severely) that we need to make sure we keep our eyes on the giver of the gift than the gift itself. We are flesh so we often tend to take our eyes off the giver of this gift and make idols of the gifts themselves which is indicative of unpreparedness and immaturity; we were not able to handle the responsibility that came with that answered prayer.
“God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear” – 1 Corinthians 10:13
One thing I’ve learned over the past two days is to be careful what I pray for and how I pray, not because I’m afraid that God will answer my prayer even though I’m not ready (I sincerely doubt that He’ll do that but I’m not very sure to be completely honest) but because I don’t want to be frustrated if my prayer doesn’t get answered as quickly as I want it to. Whenever I pray for my husband, I ask myself “babe, are you really ready to handle being a wife right now? Can you honestly take care of yourself and another human being and still be able to maintain your focus on God? You just got a job that you’re settling into, can you really juggle that and a purposeful relationship with a guy?” If I can’t answer yes, then my prayer needs to change from “God send my husband” to “God prepare me for my husband; teach me the lessons I need to learn to excel in this area of my life, give me the grace to follow your direction and focus on working at the area of my life that need close attention right now”. Now I know that marriage is one thing that you can never be completely ready for but the truth of the matter is that you want to be as ready as you possibly can and at the end of the day, you have the Holy Spirit alive and at work in you to let you know how prepared you are for anything. This I know from experience; I may make a little noise about how I’m coming home tired from work and how its tiring….blah blah but at the bottom of my heart, I know that God has taken me through the lessons I need to be prepared for it and I know that this I can do. I also knew about 2 years ago that I was in no way ready to be in a demanding corporate environment so I shied away from it but that’s another post for another day. So now that the euphoria of getting a new job has died down and the work has begun (now that it’s “after the answer”), I’m not afraid of being unprepared or unable to handle the responsibility because God has equipped me in this regard. Likewise when the euphoria of being newly married dies down (and I know one day it will, that’s just life), I will be able to get past that and focus on the work that needs to be done (by God’s grace of course, after all I’m grace’s daughter ;-)).
Now I know I’ve jabbered on about jobs and marriage (mostly because these are the main topics of discussion among my friends and other people my age) but there are plenty other examples; I remember when I was in A-levels and applying to universities for my first degree. My parents really wanted me to get into LSE (London School of Economics) because it’s a very prestigious university and I was applying for an Economics degree. I prayed to get into that school ehn…..when my rejection email came, I wailed like a banshee but I look back now and I thank God that He never answered that prayer because it would have been a disaster. Remember that:
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows”- James 1:17
“The blessings of the Lord make rich and add no sorrow”- Proverbs 10:22
God will not give you a gift that will make you happy for a moment and bring you an end that is sorrowful or put you in a situation that looks good on paper or outside but really isn’t bearing any fruit. If I had gotten into LSE (which I was in no way ready for), I would have flunked out of school and then my thoughts of suicide might well have been a reality. Basically, I’m saying that we need to think past that the idea of that thing we have been praying hard about and actually ask ourselves (and be honest of course) whether we can handle that thing that we think we want. Also, this thing that we think we want; is it the reality of it that we want or are we asking for one thing when the reality of what we want is completely different? A lady once shared with a group of girls where I was present and she said that she was grateful to God she didn’t get married when she was younger because her idea of marriage was completely different from the reality of it. She had bought into the idea of the prince charming who would sweep her off her feet and make her life completely comfortable for her. She never thought about what she would have to bring to the table or that she would also have to labour for her spouse. I’ll use myself for another example; I have never been in a relationship with a guy (I’ve never had a boyfriend and this is something I used to be ashamed of saying, thank God for growth) and I look back on my life and thank God for that because I would have been a mess. I was looking for a guy who would save me and make me feel worthy to be loved; that kind of relationship would have been a disaster and a complete wreck to my already low self-esteem because the only person that can save me and make me feel worthy is Jesus. It’s extremely unfair to put that kind of pressure and responsibility on another human being and it’s something that can be easily abused.
The truth of the matter is that at the end of the day; God wants to bless us with every heavenly blessing:
“Fear not little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom”-Luke 12:32
Therefore, the question is not whether God wants us to have good things; the question is are we ready to handle those good things? After the answers to those prayers come, will they draw us closer to God or away from Him? If God was willing to sacrifice His only Son to ensure that we not be separated from Him by our sin, please be assured beyond any reasonable doubt that He is more than willing to sacrifice our temporary happiness so that we do not take our gaze off Him and create any space between us and Him.
Alright peeps, that’s it from me today. I do hope that this speaks to someone and as usual please send in any questions and/or comments. I look forward to hearing from you guys. Honestly; the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is check my phone to see if there’s any wordpress notification of a comment (don’t mind me oh, instead of me to read my bible first *blush*. Oh well, thank God I am still work in progress). KK guys….have a lovely weekend and I look forward to hearing from you.
P.S: I’m really excited by the fact that there are people in different parts of the world reading this blog and being touched by it so I’m thinking of creating another page where people can come and share their stories and testimonies as well as where they’re from and where they live. There’s someone in Greece that has visited this page and a few other people in Ghana (and I know only one person in Ghana, no one in Greece) so I think it would be great to see different people from different walks of life share their stories. Please do let me know if this anyone would be interested in this. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you don’t want to leave a comment on the post. Thanks again guys and have a fantastic weekend :-D.