I had a hard day today. It was one of those days that I regretted putting on make-up, ate ice cream out of the carton at 11am and considered going back to bed instead of into work. I’m tired of hearing that I don’t have enough experience for jobs, or being asked what my long-term plan for my life is. I’m convinced that anyone who can tell me what they think their life will look like in 10 years should be kicked hard in the shins. It’s just not reality. Not for me, and not for most people – I’ve asked around. I sat in my car for a couple minutes after a quick trip into JoAnne’s Fabric and had a yelling match at God in my head. It went something like this, “Lord, I know you have purpose and the fact that I am where I am right now is somehow good for me, I just don’t see it. I’m done. I’m ready to just be done. I want to know why I’m here because I can’t see your purpose in it. You say wouldn’t waste experience and here I am doubting that I can even do ministry, I feel so completely disregarded. I don’t see it.” Uncertainty brings out the doubter in me, that’s for sure.
This evening I’ve been trying to work through some of this stuff. I know my circumstances aren’t going to change overnight, but I want my attitude to change, but for me I struggle to fake things, I can’t fake an attitude change, I need to change the belief, or figure out how do that. As I’ve been reading through the Gospel of Mark, I found myself judging the disciples just a little bit – feel free to judge me now, I deserve it. Jesus’ disciples watched Him feed 5,000 people and then the next time there were a large number of people to feed (4,000), they wanted to run for the hills thinking it was impossible. Reality is, without God both of those situations are impossible. The amount of food that they had in front of them could feed a family, not thousands of people, but it did. In between those two events, Jesus calms a storming ocean even as the waves are crashing up onto the ship that the disciples are in. Without God, the disciples and the ship would have been no more.
As I’ve thought and prayed through these events, I’m reminded just how much I have in common with the disciples. When things get rough, I fixate on the visible reality right in front of my eyes. My inexperience, my joblessness, my singleness, my lack of community, and the list goes on. Just as the disciples did. They fixed their eyes on the visible – multitudes of people to feed and the raging seas. I, just like the disciples, forget that there’s another part of the story. It’s invisible. That’s why it’s easy to forget. Even as I reflect back on my pity party in my car, one word came up numerous times – see. There is an invisible part of my reality – God’s goodness cannot always be seen to me. He has prepared me to whatever comes next; He is teaching me about His character, even as I wallow in self-pity. He declares that the best is yet to come. He continues to ask me to take one more step of faith into unchartered territory, against what make sense to my rational (pretend I’m rational) mind. But I want to see evidence, I don’t just want to believe it might be there, I want to see the purpose. One of the most beautiful things about God to me is how He weaves the visible and the invisible together all for His glory. But my earthy perspective prevents me from seeing the weaving some days. God, would you grant me the eyes to see how you’re weaving the invisible and the visible together in my life? And on difficult days, like today, just help me to believe that the invisible exists and that there’s more than what I can see.
“…blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:29
“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 5:18