This week I went to see a counselor. I feel weak admitting it. Like its something only people with big problems do. Like if you read this and you know me, you will immediately think less of me. Or think I have issues. Or judge me. Maybe I shouldn’t even be writing it. But anyway, I sat down with her and just talked. She asked some questions. I told her about my life. How I moved to Kansas. How my knees always hurt. How I wish I didn’t have to work at Starbucks.
She asked me what I would change about my life. I wish I had a different job. One with regular hours. One where I didn’t have to get up at 3:45 am one day and work until 11pm the next. She said my schedule alone is enough to make a person feel crazy, emotional and depressed. YES! Welcome to my life!
Someday i will write a book. It will be a rebuttal to the dude who wrote How Starbucks Saved My Life…
Ok, so back to the conversation. I said the only other thing I could really think of is that I would have liked to be married by now. Or at least have someone. To know that I don’t have to keep doing this life alone. But other than that, there’s really nothing I would change.
We talked a while more and she set down her papers and looked at me with her sweet, sincere face and said “There is nothing wrong with you. You are doing all the right things. You are seeking God, spending time with him, eating well, exercising, and are surrounded by people who love you. What I think is that you are in a wilderness. And all you are supposed to do right now is be still. Be still and know that He is God. And that is the hardest place in life to be.” People, the woman had tears in her eyes as she told me this. Man I was just glad she said nothing was wrong with me! Haha. I know I am in a friggin wilderness. Duh. Welcome to my life. And yeah. It’s definitely the hardest place I have been. How long do I have to be in this wilderness? I just thought it would be over by now. I thought moving to Kansas would be moving OUT of the wilderness. But it feels no different. Different but the same.
“The Israelites were in the desert for 40 years.”
Gosh I hope it doesn’t last that long…
“They literally walked in circles for 40 years and they didn’t know what God was going to do.”
UGH! Right now I am thinking ‘Lady, how is this encouraging to me?’
“But all God wanted them to do was to be still. To know that He was God. And that’s what you need to keep on doing.”
And that was it. My first experience with counseling. Not at all what I was expecting. She bowed her head and she prayed for me. She prayed for me to be still, she prayed for me to be led out of the wilderness, she prayed for my husband, she prayed for my new job…It was sweet. Wonderful. So encouraging. But I just walked out of the room thinking, great, now what? I was expecting it to go something more like…look at all the problems in your life and all the things you have done to mess everything up…lets work on fixing all this stuff and then maybe you will feel better. I’m good at fixing stuff. But nope. All I got was “be still”. Not quite what I was looking for. I was perplexed.
That night, I settled in bed to do my Bible study. We just started Beth Moore’s A Woman’s Heart: God’s Dwelling Place. Its only week 2 so I’m not super into it. But I like it. Its good. Liz was on the phone so I figured it’d be a good time to do the homework and reading for the day. And this is the most amazing thing. God obviously knew exactly what I needed. That this very same day I would be opening the bible study to Week 2 Day 1. The words of the counselor ringing in my ears as Beth Moore began pouring into my life.
“God seeks to set His people free from their dependence on themselves so that they depend instead on Him. Throughout this week we will discover that God’s supernatural provision for humanity is most recognizable when we find ourselves in a wilderness devoid of self-sufficiency.” And the verse for the day printed on the top of the page Exodus 14:14. The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still. I stopped right there. I read it again. Did you notice? Wilderness. Be still. Wow. Just wow.
And dudes. I hate the wilderness. I hate the pruning that is going on. I don’t like that I’m losing friends and having my heart broken and missing my family and living so far away in Kansas. But all I can say is that there is nothing wrong with me. And right now all I am going to focus on is sitting still in this wilderness.
Until God tells me to move.
I’m sitting right here.