A blog is an autobiography written as you're reading it.

Climbing the Mountain

Today, I took a walk. There’s a little mountain (just a hill, really), just near out hotel (yes, unfortunately we’re still waiting on visas) and today I took a walk up to the top; just to sort some things out. Here’s some of the stuff God showed me on this walk.

I set out up the path that switchbacks up to the top and soon I just started talking to God. It was easy, all alone on the hill with only the occasional car on the road below to disturb the silence. I was honest: God, I want answers. I’m almost 18, and there’s been a lot to think about. I went to God to see what he had to say.

What is God’s plan for my life? What does he have for me? My questions ranged from these to the more specific: should I go to X college and study Y? Do you have marriage and a family in my future? I was determined to get a bullet-pointed list of answers by the time I came down off that mountain. I did get one answer. But not the one I was expecting.

I’ve prayed a lot before, even had answers, but I’ve never been with God like that afternoon. I felt His presence. He was my Audience. And I could hear His words in my head as clear as a bell. Pretty soon I started saying them out loud, repeating them audibly. In the presence of my Maker, I started down my list of ‘issues.’ It was quite a spiel. We began with marriage.

One of my biggest things with God has been the issue of having a wife and kids. I mean, I’m (hopefully) headed to Somalia, for crying out loud. To fill you in, this is a failed state where you need to hire militia just to get out of the airport. What a place to take a family! I’ve wrestled about this issue with God before, and His answer this time was very concise.

Don’t you trust Me? Didn’t I send my own Son to die for your sin? If I can send my Son to die, can’t you trust Me with your family?

It wasn’t the last time (on either point) that He was going to hit me.

So I drilled a little more specifically, and asked God, “Well, what about X person? What should I do with that relationship?” His answer surprised me.

I do nothing.

Whoa, whoa. New ground here. I’m all set for instructions about how exactly to prepare for my life and career and I’m supposed to do nothing? Is that a typo? Needless to say we went through a lot of wrestling on this point. I don’t like doing nothing: especially with an issue as important as my future.

So…I argued with Him, just like His disciples did 2000 years ago (we’re cut from the same cloth, after all :P ) God…this just doesn’t work. Can’t you just give me some hints? Maybe a list of who’s in and who’s out for marriage, so I can save time and just focus? Or maybe you could give me a spiritual elbow nudge whenever I talk to someone, something like, “Hey, this is the one that’s going beyond ‘just friends?’”

If I could have seen God walking beside of me, He probably would have just shook his head.

Andrew, Andrew. Haven’t you learned anything I’ve taught you this week? You made good friendships this week, so much so that you couldn’t sleep the night before they left for thinking of it. Why can’t you accept all of the friendships I give to you and allow Me to advance which of them that I choose in My own time?

Whoa. That makes sense.

Of course it does. Trust Me. Don’t I know anything you will do? Didn’t I know you would try to swim to that island and because of that have to get sea urchin spines surgically removed? Didn’t I create sea urchins and place those there knowing that they’d be stepped on? Don’t I know every thought in your mind?

Okay, I get that. And that’s incredible, really. But… (Heh. I think ‘but’ is our favorite word to use in prayer. But we always use it to contradict what God has just told us) Anyways, at that point my rational half kicked in again and started to argue with God.

That’s peachy. I know that you’ve given me a lot of friendships with a lot of fantastic girls. And I’m thankful for that, I really am. But couldn’t you give me one in particular to ‘love?’ A guy needs someone to love, you know.

Do you doubt my timing? I will reveal what I will when I will. But for this time, know this: I have given you many someones to love.

At that point I stopped walking up the mountain and just stood there for five minutes, murmuring that sentence over and over again. Wow! Just…wow! It clicked in my head. Now is the time for me to draw closer to God and my family. I really need it especially as I’m preparing to go off to college. A romantic relationship would heavily distract me from the better plan God has for me.

(And whoa! Despite giving up my misguided search for bullet-pointed requirements, I find a pretty specific directing from God without even trying to. Pretty cool =))

I’m ashamed to admit it, but my relationship with my family is not the best. So I nodded. Okay. So my family’s important. So what do I do to improve those relationships? Again, the head shakes beside me.

Andrew. When will you understand? You do nothing. I do.

Oh yeah….I forgot. It’s amazing how quickly I forget. How many times will I have to relearn to trust God? Praise Him that He is a patient teacher! But man….building closer relationships with my family. . .that’s not going to be easy…

Easy? Do you think it was easy for Inseperable God to separate in order that the Son could die on the Cross? Do you think any of the life that I’ve called you to will be easy?

Stunned silence.

God, I understand! I get it! But I am so quick to forget! It’s only been an hour and You’ve reminded me time and time again of these things. How can I take this back with me to my normal routine in Moscow? (I’d just read this article from the Rabbit Room which had gotten me thinking). If I could have seen God standing there, I do think he’d have been grinning. And he gave me three sentences to remember.

God loves me.
God has a plan for my life.
All I do, is trust him.

And for me, that’s all I really need. Thanks for reading =)