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Walk on the Water

I have often wondered what this world would be like if we Christians actually lived what we talked about.  We speak often of things like God’s faithfulness, trust, hope, unconditional love, and faith…but it is rare to find someone who truly lives a life that is an example of these qualities.  It’s no wonder the world has a hard time believing that following Christ matters at all.  When they look at our lives, how much of an oxymoron do they walk away with?
The journey that God has led me on these past few weeks and months has been quite the adventure, I will say, and I’m sure that the quest is only beginning.  It began with two simple questions that God asked me:  “If you are not satisfied with what you are doing in your life right now, then where would you rather be?  Saying anywhere but here does not count.  What is holding you back from following me with all your heart?”
First of all, I knew the dream of my heart and what I desired to do.  I also knew in my heart of hearts what the next step would be.  However, what was holding me back was my belief that I could not do it.  I found a song by Mandisa that really spoke the words I felt:
If only I could see me as you see me
And understand the way that I am loved
Would it give a whole new meaning to my purpose
Change the way I see the world

Would I sparkle like a star in the night sky
Would I give a little more instead of take
If I understood I’m precious like the diamond
Of a worth no one could estimate
I’m a worth no one could estimate

You say lovely
I say broken
I say guilty
You say forgiven
I feel lonely
You say you’re with me
We both know it would change everything
If only I believed the truth about me

I wish I could hold onto the moments
When my life is spinning but I’m peaceful still
Like a wind you whisper in the silence
And tell me things this world never will
You tell me things this world never will

You say lovely
I say broken
I say guilty
You say forgiven
I feel lonely
You say you’re with me
We both know it would change everything
If only I believed the truth about me

I would sleep better at night
Wake up with hope for another day
I would love even if it cost me
Take a chance and know I’m gonna be ok
I would dare to give my life away…

Oh, I feel lonely
You say you’re with me
We both know it would change everything
If only I believed the truth about me
If only I believed the truth about me

That was how all this began.  God identified the piece in me that was holding me back once again:  my insecurity.  So He asked me, “What if you really believed the truth?  You know it and you fight it, and why?  What if you really believed the truth that I love you, I made you for a purpose, and that I will fulfill every purpose in you for which I created you?”
Ever since this song came out, it has been my theme song.  It says everything about what I dream.  God has put some pretty big dreams in my heart, and sometimes I doubt that they could ever happen.  Here is another thing…do we really believe that God can do anything?  We can say “yes”, but do we live it?  Here’s Britt Nicole’s song “Set the World On Fire”:
I wanna set the world on fire
Until it’s burning bright for You
It’s everything that I desire
Can I be the one You use?

[CHORUS]
I, I am small but
You, You are big enough
I, I am weak but
You, You are strong enough to
Take my dreams
Come and give them wings
Lord with You
There’s nothing I cannot do
Nothing I cannot do

I wanna feed the hungry children
And reach across the farthest land
And tell the broken there is healing
And mercy in the Father’s hands

[CHORUS]

Take my dreams
Come and give them wings
Lord with You
There’s nothing I cannot do
Nothing I cannot do

Take my hands, my feet
My everything
My life, my love
Lord, use me

I wanna set the world on fire
I wanna set the world on fire, yeah

Take my dreams
Come and give them wings
Lord with You
There’s nothing I cannot do

I’m gonna set the world on fire
Set the world on fire

What was it that I really wanted to do?  I have always deeply desired to care for orphans, and I knew that I did not possess the skills needed to start and run an orphanage.  My degree is in Spanish.  Therefore, logic states that I need further training, and probably in some kind of business.  I was already feeling led to Nashville, Tennessee so I started looking at programs at universities there.  Eventually I ended up at Trevecca’s Masters in Organizational Leadership.  It is their first online Master’s program, and that caused a lot of questions about whether I really needed to move to complete it.  However, I could not deny that God’s calling was to move to Nashville, so I said, “Where you send me, I will go.”
When it comes to following God’s will, there are so many different schools of thought.  Does God have one specific way for each of us to follow that He has predetermined since the day that we were born?  Or does God take whatever choices we make and use us wherever we are?  I think that my personal theology both agrees and disagrees with both schools of thought.  I believe that God created all of us for a purpose and that is to glorify Him.  He gave us all different gifts to use to do that.  I believe God calls some to be pastors, some to be evangelists, some to be teachers, etc.  I believe beyond the shadow of a doubt that He has called me to run an orphanage.  Does that mean I didn’t get a choice in the matter?  Absolutely not!  God has a funny way of drawing us to Himself and incorporating the desires that He has already placed in our hearts into a calling that will bring us the fulfillment that comes when we are living out our purpose.
However, in a way that I will never pretend to understand, God requires our obedience to His leading but also honors the stepping out in faith when the desire of our hearts is to know Him and please Him.  When I look back on my life and the risks that I have taken to know God, I have never returned disappointed.  As I remember that in light of the uncertainty that I am facing now, it is an encouraging thought that if God is the same yesterday, today and forever, then His faithfulness in this matter will never change as well.  Here is Mercy Me’s “Where You Lead Me”:
What is life?
A thousand roads, a thousand ways
Why am I so afraid to move
I’ve crossed the line
I’m stepping out so come what may
I give it all cause I’m drawn to You

As long as my heart is beating…
Where You lead me I will follow
Where You lead me I give my life away
Where You lead me I will follow
Forever and a day
Forever and a day

I can’t deny Your very presence is my life
And why would I ever turn away
Cause deep inside I know that I cannot rely
On anything less than faith

As long as my heart is beating…
Where You lead me I will follow
Where You lead me I give my life away
Where You lead me I will follow
Forever and a day

This is all I’m dreaming of
To live completely in Your love

So this is life

Where You lead me I give my life away
Where You lead me I will follow
Forever and a day

Where You lead me I will follow
Where You lead me I give my life away
Where You lead me I will follow
Forever and a day
Forever and a day

This was not an easy decision…actually, the decision part was easy.  The following through with it was extremely difficult.  It IS extremely difficult.  It’s really scary.  It was all a nice thought, but it became real when I handed my resignation letter to my boss.  It became real when I stepped into the house of my host family in Nashville and I realized the incredible hurdle I had to jump.  It became real as I sat down to type this explanation and I realized how I am making this decision with so much uncertainty still in the air.  All I have is in the hands of God now.  I’m not sure I know how to live like that.  However, I have decided what I want my life to be about:  trusting God and living every moment dependent on His strength and provision.  I want to see miracles every day and I want to give God space to work.  I want to KNOW HIM, in both His resurrection and His suffering…and believe me, that is a hard prayer to pray.  I think I’ll leave out the suffering part…except faith can’t be real without it.  I can’t pick and choose which parts of a relationship with Christ I really want…I’m either ALL IN or ALL OUT.  I choose to be ALL IN.
So when is the best time to start living out my purpose?  Mandisa’s song “Waiting for Tomorrow” really inspired me.  Here are the lyrics:
Maybe tomorrow I’ll start over
Maybe tomorrow I will finally change my ways
Said the same things yesterday
Don’t know why I’m so afraid
To let you in
To let you win
To let you have all of me

Can’t spend my whole life wastin’
Everything I know I’ve been given
‘Cause you’ve made for so much more than
Sittin’ on the sidelines
I don’t wanna look back and wonder
If good enough could’ve been better
Everyday’s a day that’s borrowed
So, why am I waiting for tomorrow?

Maybe today I’ll start believing
That your mercy is as real as you say it is
It doesn’t matter who I used to be
It only matters that I’ve been set free
You rescued me, you’re changing me
Jesus take everything

Can’t spend my whole life wastin’
Everything I know I’ve been given
‘Cause you’ve made for so much more than
Sittin’ on the side lines
I don’t wanna look back and wonder
If good enough could’ve been better
Everyday’s a day that’s borrowed
So, why am I waiting for tomorrow

Oh, I’m makin’ this my moment now
To grab the hand that’s reachin’ down to save me, You saved me
And I’m makin’ this my moment now
To grab the hand that’s reachin’ down to save me, You saved me

Can’t spend my whole life wastin’
Everything I know I’ve been given
‘Cause you’ve made for so much more than
Sittin’ on the side lines
I don’t wanna look back and wonder
If good enough could’ve been better
Everyday’s a day that’s borrowed
So, why am I waiting for tomorrow

I’m gonna grab the hand that’s reachin down
And I’m not gonna wait until tomorrow

I sat down in Dairy Queen tonight pretty distraught.  I don’t have a job yet.  If I get this place here and move, that’s quite a leap of faith.  I said to God, “I don’t understand.  I’m beginning to doubt if I hear You at all.  You gave me a dream for Nashville and a passion for Nashville.  So I took the plunge and I’m left hanging.  God, WHAT IS THIS?  Please give me something.  I need wisdom.  I need to hear from you clearly.”
I had visited Show Hope this afternoon, Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife’s nonprofit ministry for orphan care, and the people there had given me a devotional that was written by some of their board members.  The first one was written by Steven Curtis Chapman himself, and I happened to read it at this very time.  Here are some excerpts from this devotional:
“We were created for adventure.  The evidence is there in our movies, our stories, and even our lives, as the constant battle is waged between striving to remain safe versus bravely stepping out to live the full life that God offers…All adventures carry with them some level of excitement and hazard, and we cannot remain safe and comfortable and still go on a God-sized adventure.  But God doesn’t call us to be safe; He calls us to be bold and courageous, and we can trust that even our safety will be taken care of by the One who invites us to bravely step out in faith…Do you really want to know God?  Do you really want all He has for you, the abundant life He promised you?  It may take getting a little uncomfortable, and it may take risking a little of what the world tells us to hold on to.  But He is good, and what He has for us is worth far more than all that the world has to offer.  Are you willing to step out boldly and follow Him wherever He may lead?”
Those are tough words to swallow.  As much as I want to do this, I am SCARED TO DEATH.  Believe me, a million things are going through my mind, and about half of them contain the question, “What if I fail?”  There’s the easy cliché churchy answers:  God won’t let you fall.  If it is meant to be, He will provide.  It’s easy to say all that when you’re not betting your life on it.  However, I’m stepping out in faith that God will do what He says that He will do.  I am stepping out believing that His faithfulness will carry me through.  I want my life to be a testimony of who God is and what He can do with a life that is fully committed to Him.  I’m risking a lot by even saying this.  I’m risking even more by doing it.  It’s going to rock my world.  Well, here we go, God.  I’m ready.  I’m divin’ in!
Walk on the Water
Britt Nicole
You look around
It’s staring back at you
Another wave of doubt
Will it pull you under?
You wonder

What if I’m overtaken
What if I never make it
What if no one’s there?
Will you hear my prayer?

When you take that first step
Into the unknown
You know that He won’t let you go

Chorus:

So what are you waiting for?
What do you have to lose?
Your insecurities, they try to hold to you

You know you’re made for more
So don’t be afraid to move
If faith is all it takes

then you can walk on the water too

Verse 2:
So get out and let your fear fall to the ground
No time to waste, don’t wait
And don’t you turn around and miss out
On everything you were made for
I know you’re not sure
So you play it safe
You try to run away

If you take that first step
Into the unknown
He won’t let you go

(chorus)

Bridge:
(step out)
Even when it’s storming
(step out)
Even when you’re broken
(step out)
Even when your heart is telling you, telling you to give up
(step out)
When your hope is stolen
(step out)
You can’t see where you’re going
You don’t have to be afraid

So what are you waiting,
What are you waiting for?

So what are you waiting for?
What do you have to lose?
Your insecurities, they try to hold to you

You know you’re made for more
So don’t be afraid to move
If faith is all it takes, then you can walk on the water…
Walk on the water too

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About the author chelseamaxine

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