A Year I didn´t Expect
In reality, when 2017 started I didn’t have plans, I just was expecting a peaceful, beautiful year, not compared with the sad, difficult, stressful 2016.
January started with news I didn’t like, with changes I didn’t like. I suffered, complained and finally understood God would go with me anywhere, and that should be enough me. He gave me Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” God wanted me to trust His plan, He wanted me to surrender.
Life kept changing, that’s the way it is. Sometimes we like it, sometimes we don´t. After being afraid of change, anxiety came, the fear of being out of control, the lack of trust when my life and the life of others wasn´t what I expected. Have you ever felt that way? When you can’t do nothing to get what you want and struggle to be content right where you are? In the midst of that situation, God reminded me Jeremiah 29:11 again. He had a plan, He is God, and He wanted me to remember it. I can’t even make one of my hairs black or white, I can´t change hearts, I can’t control my friend’s life or my siblings’ life, I can´t know what God has in store for me, but I can trust and rest in the fact that God has a plan, but if I continue trying to be God I’ll never enjoy that plan. Expectations can be a serious problem, they make us think we know what is best instead of waiting on the Lord patiently and silently, sometimes we become wise in our own eyes and become angry or disappointed when things take a different way. God started to convince me through His word of how proud I was, and how I loved my plans more than His.
I started to understand, God whispered me softly to surrender and I really want to do it, I want to obey, to honor God, and serve Him and love Him with an undivided heart… and suddenly something “good” started happening, my heart was rejoicing and lovingly God reminded me that He is greater, better than any blessing so He asked me to quit my dream for a while and instead He gave me sickness, severe and chronic sickness. Maybe I would have to quit that dream forever… maybe I was going to die and it wouldn’ be possible anyway…
And there I was again, letting go my life, the health I had never been thankful enough for, not knowing how long I was going to be on this earth, forgetting God´s word, feeling miserable, with a thousand questions in my mind. I knew I needed God and prayed every day and read His word every day, but I think my prayers were more complains than praises, all I could think about was that I could be more useful for God if I were healthy, all I read made me think I had the right to ask for health. And then miraculously, Jeremiah 29:11 appeared again. I was blinded by my pride and selfishness, I was loving my life as if it were mine even when God had already bought it. Maybe my sickness and even my death would bring Him more glory if I had the right attitude before Him. God never healed my dad, but how much glory he gave God through his sickness and death. He was purifying my heart so patiently and I still wanted to cling to my expectations. And at the same time, incredible miracles were happening, miracles I didn´t expect either. It was like God saying, “Don´t you see I´m in control of everything? I will do the impossible to provide for you, I will carry you through, just trust me!”
And I said yes, with all my heart I wanted to rest in my good Shepherd!! Then something really good happened, my dear friend got married and on that day Jeremiah 29:11 appeared again. It was God preparing me for what was coming. Quitting my dream was not for a while, it should be forever (maybe not), my heart was broken (it hurts still). But I knew that’s what God wanted me to do, I had peace, I knew He still had a plan… His consolations delighted my aching soul. Finally, on December 6th Jeremiah 29:11 appeared again…
I remember I chose Psalm 85:12 as my verse of the year: “Indeed the Lord will give what is good…” and looking back, He did!!! I needed that to see how I much I love myself, how much I want to control my life, even with good intentions, to see that I´m more selfish and proud than I thought. He broke me, but it is good for me that I was afflicted, I was made sorrowful to the point of repentance, He changed me. It was a good year, and it would have been better if I had surrendered from the beginning. And now miraculously I´m feeling sooooo much better, not completely well, but I think I´m recovering :)
“For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord” Jeremiah 29:11-14
That happened, I came to realize I had to seek Him with ALL MY HEART, not just with a part of it, ALL THE TIME, and He will be found by me… the one my soul needs. And it doesn´t matter what happens, He has a plan, I just need to humble myself, trust and obey :)
I´ll try to write on the specific things God taught me.