Still Learning

I don’t remember where I had been, but I came rolling up the driveway just as Daniel, our oldest son who runs Doorposts was getting in his car to go get his wife and children to join us for lunch and the afternoon.

“Hey, I just remembered, today is the day Kevin Swanson is interviewing you for his program!” he said as he opened his car door.

“Gasp! When?

“At 1 o’clock our time.”

“Uh, that’s in an hour!”

“Yeah, bye!” (Actually, he wasn’t quite that heartless, but he did leave!)

Well, I went into panic mode. First of all, I am not a speaker. That’s why I write. My mind tends to go blank when I have to speak. Second, when Daniel talked me into saying yes to this interview, we agreed that I would need to know what the questions were going to be before the interview. We had seen no questions.

The girls and I raced around trying to put lunch together while I also tried to gather my wits and calm my spirit. I wasn’t succeeding.

Daniel and his family arrived and he announced that the email with the questions had come – thirty minutes before the interview. This is when I really started to fail my trust-in-God-or-trust-in-myself test. The questions were scary! I needed notes! I didn’t have time to make notes! “God, I don’t do this sort of thing!”

Katelyn (bless her heart) hurried to print out some recent blog posts. Daniel highlighted major points. I looked at the pages and didn’t comprehend anything. It’s embarrassing to admit how much whining I was doing. “I can’t do this!”

Duh.

It was about time I realized that! Of course I couldn’t do it. But God could, and it was time (actually past time) to remember that and put my trust in Him. He had sovereignly brought this task into my life, and He was ready and willing to equip me for it. We prayed, the phone rang, Daniel passed it off to me, and God kept me from passing out. 🙂

How many years will it take before I remember that it is always God working through me? I can’t do anything in my own strength. I can’t mother in my own strength. I can’t write in my own strength. I can’t even breathe without God enabling me to do so.

I take so much for granted. I so easily forget that I am totally dependent on God. Thankfully, God knows this, so He graciously steers me into situations where it is obvious that I’m in trouble on my own, where I know I can’t do it without Him. It’s funny how it works – the more aware I am of my helplessness, the greater my reliance on Him. The more I rely on Him, the more I learn to trust Him. The more I step out and trust Him, the more I witness His faithfulness over and over. And the more I see His faithfulness, the more I grow to love Him.

My weakness doesn’t matter, because He is strong. My weakness is actually a blessing because it drives me to Him.

“. . . for when I am weak, then am I strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:10)

 

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So — if you have thirty minutes to spare, and want living proof that God sustains us in our weakness, you can listen to the results of my humbling day at Generations Radio! 🙂

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5 Comments

  1. Thanks, Pam! I needed to hear this and be reminded again that I am completely dependent upon the Lord. My husband is in the military and has to go away at least once a year for an extended period of time. It’s a standing joke that there’s always some kind of drama whenever he goes away. It’s not a matter of “if”, it’s just a matter of “when” and “what”. For example, last summer in one week our dryer died, the garage door broke, our dog received a vaccine I didn’t want him to get & thus proceeded to vomit every 15-20 minutes for several hours resulting in an emergency call to an after hours vet, our dog was also bitten by a brown recluse spider resulting in an after hours visit to the same vet & a major vomitting/diarrhea blowout by him in the back of our van on the way home from the vet, our entire driveway was covered with flying ants which I thought were termites, and my credit card info was stolen.

    So, this year when I was pregnant with our third baby and placed on bedrest, because we have a history of two premature babies, I panicked thinking, “This baby is going to come while my husband is away!” I had a major pity party and tantrum talking to my mom, who very calmly kept reminding me that everything will be ok, because God is in control. She kept telling me to think positive and not focus on the negative, and that this time God was going to let this baby go to full-term. She told me I wasn’t trusting God. I told her I trusted the Lord and knew He would take care of everything, but I just didn’t know how He would take care of everything. I told her I was just trying to prepare myself mentally for what I knew was coming. Well, I didn’t know exactly what was coming, I just thought that something was coming and I needed to prepare for it somehow.

    Well, true to our history, while my husband was away, my placenta started to separate at 11:30 pm, and our baby was delivered by emergency c-section. However, the Lord totally took care of everything and provided so many amazing brothers & sisters who surrounded us to help take care of our other two children, pick my husband up from the airport, clean our house, provide meals for all of us, and bathe all of us and the entire situation in prayer. The Lord reminded me yet again that He is indeed in control, and there’s no way I can prepare for what’s ahead other than to completely trust Him and continue to depend totally on Him for everything and in all situations. I’m beginning to see that He has graciously provided all of these “emergencies” in order to teach me this same lesson over and over again. Instead of learning it, though, I seem to fail each time and have a pity party/tantrum every time my husband gets ready to leave. He’s due to leave again in a few months, so my prayer is that this time I will finally be able to trust the Lord completely and allow Him to orchestrate my circumstances however He sees fit to orchestrate them. I’m also praying that just like the woman in Proverbs 31, God will “clothe” me in “strength & dignity”, and that I will be able to “smile at the future”. Thanks again for reminding me of such a great lesson, and for being willing to share how you are still learning after so many years of walking with the Lord. 🙂

  2. We heard you and thought you did great! God reminded us of some things we had forgotten in our parenting! (It is nice to know that others ahead of me in the race still need to be reminded that it is God through me!)
    Blessings to you!

  3. I’m glad you were able to rise to the occasion (or rather, that your faith allowed you to), but I’m not sure how the interviewer’s TOTAL lack of courtesy and/or advance preperation (as in, those questions were either not sent when they were prepared or not even prepared until you received them) is to be construed as another opportunity to trust the Lord.

    The lesson *I* learn from this is that you’re saving someone from looking incompetent. I can only hope the interviewer was grateful and promised to do a better job in the future when agreeing to a subject’s requests for advance notice of topic.

  4. This is just a good example of “all things working out for good to those who love God.” God brought this situation to pass and lovingly used it to help me see once again how I need to trust HIM, not myself. No hard feelings — things just happen sometimes, and the interviewer probably had plenty of other things to do besides sending questions ahead of time to chickens like me! 🙂

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