If walking with God was categorized like college courses, I think I’ve moved past level 101 by now. I might even be presumptive enough to say I’m in 301, but just as soon as I claim something like that, God might say “Well then, little wise one, time for a pop quiz or comprehensive exam!”
I HAVE learned a lot in these 43 years so far, about 38 of those actually on the path with Jesus. I’ve been thinking today about some of the lessons I’ve learned most recently:
- A recurring lesson this year has been to put my hope ONLY in God, not in outcomes, not in plans I dream up or someone else suggests, not in stuff – money, things, houses, or otherwise. I never knew quite what it meant to truly hope in God until this year. I’m sure He’ll teach me even more about it in the years to come.
- I’ve learned that you never know what to expect when following Jesus. God is full of surprises – some fun and happy, some challenging and even distressing. Once again, my lack of control is brought to the forefront. Might as well keep my hands off and just keep trusting, even when I don’t understand or can’t make sense of something. In my past, God has always brought good out of walking this path and along the way He shows His love, as if to keep me going and help me not give up.
- I’ve learned that I can wait and hold out a lot longer than I thought I could. I’m not saying I enjoy it, but I’m still alive and still waiting for some long-lasting issues to be resolved or futures to be revealed. Like walking where there is no path, laying one stone ahead of myself and then stepping on it, when faith seems to be gone but I keep walking towards God, somehow there’s a little more faith there. Must be another one of God’s limitless resources for us.
- I’ve learned that the beauty of sunshine, which I love, the nearness of family, which I love even more, fun, health, and prosperity which are all wonderful actually pale in comparison with inner peace knowing I’m where I’m supposed to be. The peace of God and the relationship I have with Him is becoming more and more valuable to me, even more crucial than all of those things and people I love. It trumps everything else.
- I’ve learned that God can handle it. “What?” you may ask? Anything. Why do I keep thinking from time to time that he needs my ideas, my expertise, my help?
- I’ve learned that even when I think I’ve learned all there is to learn about trust, surrender, faith, joy, God’s heart, etc. then God teaches me something else about all of those things.
This really is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s not some one-time, crash course in becoming like Jesus. It’s a lifetime of “higher education,” in the truest form of the word.