I was under the false impression more than half of my life (at this stage) that if I could only please people, they would brand me ‘good enough’. And BOY! did I try my best... just to find that it was never enough, let alone good enough.
Fear reigned in my life, not faith. I ended up making the biggest mistake of my life because I did not have the courage to follow my own heart; trying to rather not disappoint people – people who didn’t truly care about my best interest anyway... (I discovered after the fact). They did care enough about themselves, though, to pitch for the party, the food and the gossip. At least some of them left some decent gifts.
Not too long afterwards things starting derailing in a VERY bad way. Where were all those people that I was trying to please at all cost? I was sorely disappointed to discover that they were nowhere to be found. Everyone wants to share the lime light at the wedding, but the marriage – the life after the occasion - ... well, that’s your ‘baby’. I’ve learnt one of the most prominent lessons in my life: don’t try to please other people – there will always be someone who don’t approve of something you do or believe or stand for – rather follow your own heart!
While I was at rock bottom I came across a book – a combination of short ‘stories’ (if you will) that contained some simplistic but divine truths about life – most of which the author had learnt on the path of her own life journey. One of the pieces struck me in particular and it has never left me. She wrote (and I try to say it as accurately as I can – it’s been quite a few years ago): “...some people call it gut, sixth sense, instinct, woman’s intuition... call it what you may,...” but she believes that it is that still Small Voice on the inside of us – Holy Spirit speaking to us and guiding us; warning us, comforting us, giving us wisdom. She spoke of how she had learnt to trust that voice and follow it because God knows where we’re going, and where we shouldn’t go – He knows the end from the beginning and we should heed that Voice.
I couldn’t help but break down in tears right there in the shop because I knew in that moment that I had been a people pleaser all my life and now I’ve caused myself endless pain – my heart and my life had been shattered because I did not have the courage to follow my own heart. I knew that I was making a grave mistake. I ended up paying very dearly.
Right there in the shop it was the cry of my heart that I would have the courage to start trusting that Voice and to follow it no matter what. More than anything I desired to get to where I’m supposed to be. So I started on a new journey – a new way of being and doing. Since then I’ve made decisions that no one approved of and that was some of the most successful moments of my life, and some of the decisions had a few cheerleaders, but they were not my drive force. I’ve learnt that on the other side of every decision there are consequences that no one has to deal with except you. There’s been times when people tried to push me in a direction that I just knew in my heart it was not the right time, and so I chose to stick to my guns and wait it out – and when I felt lead in my heart that the time was right... BOY did it work out just marvelous.
No man knows the blue print for another’s life journey – only God. He is the divine compass, and in the end, He is the divine Judge of all things.
A while back I encountered a very hurtful experience in my work environment – it lasted for a very long time. Eventually I was so disillusioned that I didn’t know who was right, who was wrong, who had which agenda and who cared most for what. I started doubting myself, became suspicious and eventually thought that I was missing it completely. I left rather broken and hopeless. But then, just two days ago, God gave me a special gift: one of the key players in the game in which I got hurt so badly, ended up in the same boat as I was in. In hindsight she was able to see truth from her perception at the time – that which drove her to deal with me the way she did. She was able to identify what the situation really was and everyone’s true colors started showing up once I was out of the picture. She came to realize just how out of hand the whole situation became and we were able to talk it through. God reminded me that even when I thought my whole world was coming apart, that which was in my heart was correct; I was on the right path, no matter how disillusioned I felt. I fought the good fight, and someone’s life is changed forever because of it.
I feel as if God restored my faith in my ability to hear from Him and that He is always in control, no matter what things may seem like to yourself, or even to everyone else! WOW, isn’t God amazing!
I most certainly don’t have it all together; I don’t know the future and I don’t have all the right answers, but I know the One Who do!
Sometimes all we have is to trust our gut and have the courage to get out of the boat when that is how we feel lead to do. Sometimes we just cannot predict the outcome of anything before we’ve even taken one step. Sometimes life is trial and error, but if you did not follow your heart, how will you ever know? Or will you forever wonder “what if?” Sometimes you have to live in the moment and enjoy the scenery that is outside of your window that very minute. You cannot imagine the picture perfect beauty of the spring flowers in Namaqualand when you’re still stuck in rush hour traffic in Jo’burg, on your way there... Sometimes you just have to travel and enjoy it when you get there.
There’s a fine line between peering into the future and living in the moment. But trying to live in the past or the future steals your moment – your present.
So here’s what I think: take note of the information boards along the journey so you may get to your destination and be sure to travel as safely and responsibly as you possibly can – do what is in your ability to do – but don’t be so focused on the destination that you miss the whole darn trip on the way there! Accept that you are NOT going to get it right every single time, but that’s ok. Just be sure to learn something from it. No one should suffer in vain.
Isaiah 30:21 And your ears will hear a word behind you saying, ‘This is the way, walk ye in it’, when you turn to the right hand and when you turn to the left.
Failing to obey could – will – cause you to miss God’s plan. Abiding is obeying. Then blessing is not possible, but inevitable.
Proverbs 20:24 Since the Lord is directing our steps, why try to understand everything that happens along the way?
ALWAYS care what GOD thinks – His opinion is the most important one! Seek Him for it with all your heart! Then... whatever you call it... FOLLOW it!!