Have ever noticed you were thinking something about God or church or the Bible or whatever & realized that whatever you were thinking is not who God is...or what the Bible actually says?
This happens a lot these days. A lot. And it's good. Because some of what we have been taught is not necessarily true. Some sayings you have heard are not biblical at all (even though they were taught as if they were). And some things we weren't taught at all, but somehow we ended up believing it anyway. Things adults say to children, you know... you might take things literally that weren't meant that way at all. And you grew up believing a lie. That God was about magic & superstitions & obligations. But some of what we believed growing up was wrong. We knew it, as we got older, but it still kind of got deep into our thinking.
Let me start from the beginning.
On my way to Zumba every Tuesday & Thursday night, I say a little prayer.
I pray that I won't fall down during class.
I know, right? It's okay, you can laugh! But that is my biggest fear. I'm a "front row" girl...because it's easier for me if i can see the teacher. And it's kind of fun (although i always worry people are judging me because I would choose to be on the front row...at my size... or like I think I'm a good dancer... ah, insecurities...but that's another post).
Anyway, it may be silly, but every single time I am on my way to Zumba, i pray, "Dear Lord, thank you for zumba! Thank you for such an awesome class & teacher! Now, help me to have an awesome class, to give it all I've got & TO NOT FALL DOWN!"
This is not from some prior experience. I have never fallen down in Zumba, bootcamp or any other exercise class. I have, however, fallen down at LSU plenty of times & so now it is worth my while to just ask God to help me stay on my feet!
Anyway. This past Tuesday, I was on my way to class & I forgot to pray that I wouldn't fall down.
I know what you're thinking. You're thinking..."ohmygosh, she fell down!"
No. I didn't. :)
But in the beginning of class as we were moving our hips like CRAZY... & doing all these moves that I pretty much know by heart now... I thought with a panic, "Oh no!!! I didn't pray that I wouldn't fall in class!"
I guess I had it in my head that because I prayed those other times & never fell...then because I did not pray this time, i would (naturally) fall down. That's what i mean by silly things we believe. Of course, no one taught us God is waiting to strike us down. But just by them saying "if you do this, then God will take care of you", we assumed the opposite was true as well. At least I did & sometimes I catch myself & have to remind myself of the truth.
So, immediately, as we're dancing (& pouring some serious sweat), my thoughts are going like this, "oh no i forgot to pray before i got here that i wouldn't fall! Oh, please Lord, don't let me fall! Don't let me fall during class!" (I hope you are not laughing at me... we all have frantic conversations like these with God, right? ... RIGHT?!).
And this is what I heard in my head: "I won't let you fall, Melissa."
I don't know if it was God's voice as much as it was God reminding me of my father's voice. My earthly father. Who, when i would stand on the edge of the pool, afraid to jump into the deep, would say, "Come on, Melissa. I'll catch you!". Who, when I was on top of some monkey bars, afraid to get down, would lift up his hands to catch me & say, "I won't let you fall, Melissa. Jump!"
And everytime? I jumped. And every time, he caught me.
And that is like our Father. Our Heavenly Father.
He is not some big holy stranger up in the sky that is waiting for us to make a mistake. He knows we are human and forgetful & often get ourselves in situations where He will need to catch us. He gave us our daddies to be an example of what our Heavenly father is like. Now, i know not all of us had good examples as daddies. It takes a lot longer to trust in a heavenly father when your father figure abandoned you/hurt you/broke your heart. But that is not who God is. He loves you. He is not there waiting for you to make some ridiculous mistake! I know that God doesn't wish to see me fall in Zumba class or anywhere else! He's not wanting to see me fall. Not physically, but not in any other way either. Certainly not spiritually.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
When I heard that voice say, "I won't let you fall" to me in Zumba class this week, I wasn't sure what it meant. I started this post, but I wasn't really sure what it was that God was trying to tell me. What I would even say about it in this post. But just 2 days later I found out that after the end of October, I will be out of a job.
I've been there 3 years. I love it there. Some of you may remember a time when I HATED it there, but so many things have changed and it's gotten better and better, especially this year. And especially now with our new offices. I love it. There's very little i absolutely hate about it now. And it was definitely going to be my LAST job for a very long time! But all that's over.
We are a government-funded program and it was a pilot program to begin with. Basically, they are pulling the contract. It's about money. And so, our entire department - 15 of us - are out of a job after October. Very very sad.
And what keeps ringing in my ears is, "I won't let you fall, Melissa." I guess He was telling me that to hold on to for later. Just a few days later, when i felt like the floor caved in beneath me. It was a shock. But He won't let me fall. He has other things for me. I have been so respected at this current job. I know you earn respect and anywhere else, I will be starting over. He won't let me fall. I know I have so many friends and have built up with a rapport with so many colleagues. He won't let me fall. I know I have had a couple of raises and cannot possibly take a pay cut. He won't let me fall. I have no idea what November holds for me. I don't know what life will be like after that. If i will like my new job or hate it, if i will feel confident in it (the way i do now) or be shaky. I know that i hate interviews & job searches & being trained & starting over more than anything. But you know? He won't let me fall.
He's got this. God does. He knows what's happening and He is not surprised by it at all. My first reaction was shock and later it was anger. Not at my boss or her boss but at the people in charge who are doing this. But when it comes down to it, none of that matters. Yes, it SUCKS, it absolutely does. I love my coworkers. I will miss them so much. I hate that just when i'm starting to actually love my job, it's being taken from me. Then again... it's got to be all a part of His plan. And not just for me. He's got a plan for all of us, you know?
I shared about the job situation on my weightloss blog the other day, and i don't think i sounded this positive about it. Well, it was still very new & shocking to me. Also, i should note that I just came from an awesome conference and spent sometime with Jesus. And got some peace in my heart. My world feels a little shaky right now. I don't like having NO IDEA where I will be working in 2 months! But still. It's gonna be okay.
It's like being that little girl again, up in a tree that I climbed & now wishing I hadn't. Daddy's arms outstretched to catch me. That's what God is doing. He's not going to let me fall. Yes, I'm jumping into the unknown. Or should I say, falling into it! But still. He's got this! He knows & his hands are not tied.
"My hope is built on nothing less,
than Jesus' blood & righteousness.
I dare not trust thy sweetest frame,
but wholly lean on Jesus' name.
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
All other ground is sinking sand."