Thursday, March 19, 2015

and if not, He is still good.

I have really been struggling with not getting what I want lately. I'm not talking about throwing a childish temper tantrum because I didn't get the orange marker that I wanted; I'm talking about getting my hopes up about things that I've wanted for my life for a long time and being extremely disappointed when they don't work out.

I had great plans for Summer 2015. I had a job planned out, I planned to meet some of my best friends, have amazing experiences, and grow as a person and in my walk with Christ. But that job didn't work out and I was extremely disappointed. Heck, I'm still disappointed. But each and every day, I'm trying to find the glory and promise from God in the rejections.

This is not as easy as saying, "God doesn't want me to do it, so I'm not gonna be disappointed anymore! Yay, I'm happy again!" Wow, do I wish life worked that way.

I was scrolling through the She Reads Truth shop online and admiring the beautiful products they have. I saw a t-shirt that was grey and had a black ampersand sign (& <-- this thing if you've never heard the proper name for it!) and I clicked on it because I figured there had to be some meaning to it. Oh man, was I right. The name of the shirt is "Daniel 3 Ampersand V-Neck Tee" and seeing as I'm not so great at remembering the contents of each book of the Bible, I read the description...

"And if not, He is still good. 
It’s become an anthem among the She Reads Truth community from the story in Daniel 3. Do you have something you are hoping God will show up and do? Do you trust that He is good and able to grant that desire? Do you trust that He is also good in the “And, if not…”?

Remember Daniel chapter 3, when Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to fall down and worship King Nebuchadnzzar's image of gold? He threatened to throw them into a blazing furnace. 

"Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, 'King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.'" 
Daniel 3:16-18, NIV 
The Daniel 3 Ampersand Tee reminds us that our God is able to deliver us from all things. And if not, He is still good."

Dang, how compelling is that? I know that in the story, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (I always called him Abindigo, #themoreyouknow), they are saying that their God will deliver them from harm and from death in the furnace, but I think this still applies to hurt, disappointment, and heartache.
A different way of looking at this statement is:
"And if it's not in God's plan, He is still good."

Just because it was in my plan, it doesn't mean it was in God's plan. God has plans for my summer and just because this one thing didn't work out, it doesn't mean that there isn't something else waiting for me. I tend to get angry and upset when things don't work out, but we have to remember that He is still good. He still loves us and we don't deserve it and when will we ever come to terms with that? I don't deserve to have "my plan" work out, I don't even deserve His grace.

Just some thoughts I've been processing lately, and I thought I'd share them with y'all. Hope y'all are pushing through spring semester if you're in school, and if you're in school or not, I hope you're having a great week. I've been holding onto some sort of illness for the last week and I can't get enough sleep these days but I'm persevering! I love y'all, I'm so thankful for you.
xoxo, Molly