This is a story of God’s perfect provision, and answered prayers.
“So you need money for college, and you’re going to Ireland for the summer instead of working?”
The resounding question, prior to my departure for Monaghan. Everyone said I was crazy, but alas, our God has provided, just as I knew He would.
A couple of weeks ago I sat down to write a little blog draft about what I was facing, with the return of school coming closer. But I finally, after months and months of searching for a way out of double majoring, told God that I knew He would help me succeed in His plan for me. I cast off all hesitation and began to ready myself for jumping into the terrifying unknown with complete faith in God’s promises, because I was finally beginning to fully and wholeheartedly know that God will make a way, against all odds.
So as I started preparing myself to jump back into the 21 hours of courses, 4 jobs, and numerous other responsibilities, I had to replace the fear and dread with faith and excitement that God would somehow help me to succeed. That’s when he opened a door.
I suddenly found myself with enough scholarship and loan, not only to return in the fall, but to replace my music major scholarship and shave off a year of school! Within days of handing it all over to the Lord, he made a way for me to just be a bible major, and to graduate in a total of three years!
It’s scary to watch a music degree slip from my fingers, and to see that I no longer will have any qualifications other than a theology degree. I’m still going to have a terrifying amount of debt upon graduation. However I’m watching God’s plan unfold as he narrows down my options for ministry. I’m watching the vast unknown before me slowly shape into the path God’s prepared for me, and I know that He will continue to provide!
Here, the blog post I began to write just before the Lord faithfully opened a door:
“Thinking about the “real world”.
I’ve been in Monaghan for 4 weeks now, and I am absolutely loving it. The people are amazing, the kids are adorable, and even on the most cold and disgusting days God completes it with a rainbow or a breathtaking sunset. The bible studies are incredible, Hope Café is a delight, and the list goes on and on.
Throughout my month here I’ve been able to think only about the summer and making the most of my time here, but now reminders of the upcoming fall semester are beginning to creep in from time to time.
Pending financial provision, I’ll be back at Lipscomb, working at least 4 part-time jobs and double-majoring for scholarship. I absolutely love being a bible major there, because the faculty and the students are all incredibly genuine and I’m learning so much, but the workload and the pressure of majoring in music is another story. I really do enjoy music, but the rehearsals, lessons, 10 hours practice time per week for viola and 5 for voice, recital attendance, and the newly arisen need to prove myself to the faculty is exhausting. I was warned during finals week that if I don’t step up my game and show a bit more dedication to the music department, I’m going to be in some deep trouble soon, so now not only do I have this pile of responsibilities in front of me, they all have to be completed above and beyond what is required. Honestly, I’m scared. But God is preparing me.
It’s been a long time since I’ve felt so confident in God’s provision and guidance. As Nicholas at Hope Café tells me nearly every day, my time here is precious, and it will be gone in a flash.
Thinking about the future, (even though it’s only one terrifying 15 week semester), scares me tremendously, but we weren’t made to worry about the future, for tomorrow can worry about itself. Who knows what a day may bring? This week, these promises are ringing true, as a little glimmer of hope and a great comfort.
Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to thee. Take my moments and my days, let them flow with ceaseless praise. Take my hands and let them move at the impulse of thy love. Take my feet and let them be swift and beautiful for thee. Take my voice and let me sing, always only for my King. Take my lips and let them be filled with messages from thee. Take my silver and my gold, not a mite would I withhold. Take my intellect and use every power as you choose.
Take my will and make it thine; it shall be no longer mine. Take my heart, it is thine own, it shall be thy royal throne! Take my love, my Lord I pour at your feet, its treasure store. Take myself and I will be ever only all for Thee.
One of my academic advisers sat me down and asked me what I’m going to be doing in 10 years. Ministry; but where, what, how? I have no idea. All I know is that I’m trying my absolute hardest at what has been placed before me, and I’ll just have to try even harder this fall. But I don’t have to worry about the unknown, because God knows it already, and He will take my hand and guide me there. People tell me I’m crazy for not having a plan, but I didn’t have a plan for this summer and just look at how much God is working!
As I go back to my normal life, I’m not going back into the “real world”. What I’m doing right now is living in the real world, and in the realest way, because I’m laying every single worry in Jesus’s hands and following Him into the unknown. I may not have clear, specific goals for my life in missions, but I do have one: that I will live my entire life open-handed, and as the Spirit places tasks and dreams and hopes in front of me, I will pursue them wholeheartedly. Right now that dream is to take part in God’s work here in Monaghan, in music, art, conversation, and whatever else He places in front of me.
Father, I am your vessel, and I need you to guide me. “Like the stars, your word will align my voyage and remind me of where I’ve been and where I’m going.” Thank you for your providence, your presence, your peace. Help me continue to work at everything as if for you, because this is exactly where you want me.”
Against all odds, God provided Abraham with a son, Isaac, then asked him to sacrifice Isaac. Abraham said yes, he took his son with him, and it wasn’t until Abraham stood with the knife ready to sacrifice him that God said, “Wait,” and provided another offering. Abraham was tested, and he followed God all the way. I wasn’t called to sacrifice anything (other than my free time and my sanity), but God waited until I had fully and completely surrendered before He provided more than I asked for!
Our God answers prayers, whether it be provision above and beyond my expectations, or beginning to heal my dear friend Lydia’s father, against doctor’s predictions. Sometimes he just wants to give us an opportunity such as this, to fully let go and watch him work.