What do you do when you feel like the God of the universe is telling you to let go of the future you thought was yours? How do you even begin to go about being obedient?
Lord, what does this even look like?
I thought obedience was enough. I thought that letting go of someone was what He was asking me to do. But now… now I’m terrified.
How do you go about letting go of a concept that you’ve never questioned? I’ve always assumed that my future was bright and normal. Good, solid career. Smokin’ hot husband. Halo-encircled children. Decent home.
I didn’t think I was particularly extraordinary. I thought I would do things a little differently than most — because, let’s face it, I’m a little odd — but the end result was always the same. The normal. The expected.
But what if I was wrong? What if the path that 80 percent of my friends have already taken is not the same path I’m supposed to take?
I’ve never considered that. I’d joke about it at times, about joining a convent, because who doesn’t joke about nuns and habits that my hair can’t fit under? But I never actually believed that marriage wasn’t in the cards for me.
And I honestly don’t know if it is or isn’t. But just considering the possibility that it’s not wrecks me.
I recently broke up with someone, and it was a break that was both unexpected and heartbreaking. And while breaking up with him may have been the hardest thing I’ve ever done, I knew in my bones that it was what God was calling me to do.
People called me brave. They called me strong. But I’m neither of those things. I’m terrified. Terrified of letting go of the one dream that has never faltered, never altered course, never been questioned.
Because not being able to be with him is gut-wrenching. My chest tightens and tears immediately prick my eyes whenever I even think about it. I’ve gotten pretty good in the last month about controlling the reaction. I hardly ever cry anymore.
But there’s a chance that he and I are in a period of separation. And even if our separation is permanent there is still the hope that God has someone “better” for me.
At least, that’s what I’ve always been told. “Forget about him, Mags, there’s someone way better out there for you.” I’ve told my friends and sisters that my whole life.
But what if God is calling me to a different future? One without a lifelong companion, without somebody to love me, without somebody who chose me over everyone else. I can’t get past what I would miss out on, all of the love I’d never experience.
But how much am I limiting God by thinking all of this? What my terror is really saying is, “God, you’re not enough. You’re too small to consume my heart. Only a man can show me true, abiding love. Only a man can fulfill my heart’s desires.”
I used to think that I was a really solid Christian. I served all the time, I had the right answers in Bible study, people came to me for advice, I crushed Bible trivia — I knew God.
I can’t believe how far from God I actually was, how far I still am. Because now — in the face of really diving into God and really getting to know Him on a level that trumps every other relationship in my life — I’m frozen.
I stare at my Bible, too scared to open it. I’m too scared to take that step into a future that I can’t comprehend. I know that if I open my Bible, I’m saying, “Okay God. Let’s do this. Become my number 1.”
He’s always been number 2 or 8 or 78. And in those far-off slots, He’s rocked my life. What will happen if He’s number 1?
Editor’s Note: Margaret is a contributor to this blog, but I’m not the only writer whose words you may see here. To read more posts by Margaret or to see the other writers, visit the authors’ categories in the menu at the top right corner of the screen.