Recently, I moved into a new room in our house, just a few doors down from where I've been living for about the last two years. It was a simple move in most aspects. No moving trucks required, no boxes, no packing... just re-organizing, getting rid of a some old things I no longer used or needed, and moving the items I did use into a new environment, where they would fit in a whole new way... (We love a good metaphor).
God likes to speak to me through everyday task sometimes, and this was one of those profound and beautiful moments where He chose to speak into my life in a powerful way.
I had spent the few days prior moving some smaller items and getting things in order, so that the only thing left to move was my bed. In the same way, God prepares our hearts, and our lives, piece by piece, in every moment of healing, surrender, and growth for where He is taking us next.
But, as it turns out, moving a queen-size mattress and box spring across the house all by yourself at 6 A.M. is not exactly easy... trust me, I was just as shocked by this discovery as you are. Yet, there I was, pushing, and shoving, and dragging my mattress through the narrow hallways, and around every tight corner of our home, until I finally plopped it down in my new room. Viola!
As I had been dragging my mattress to its new home, with great struggle I might add, I stopped for a moment and thought to myself, "This is hard work."
To which God quickly responded, "New is hard." Ouch.
So often I feel so ready for the new to come, but so impatient when it comes to the process.
Moving into a new room was such a tangible example of stepping into the NEW LIFE and NEW SEASONS God has for us. *Sidenote: I love how God knows our hearts so intimately and knows how we learn best! Where are all my #handsonlearners at?*
God, in His infinite wisdom and goodness, used this beautiful moment to show me that there were certain things in my life that simply COULD NOT COME where He was taking me next.
He used it to remind me that stepping into the NEW places He has for me, requires ACTIVE PARTICIPATION on my part. I couldn't just throw all my furniture out into the hallway and expect my new room to just "magically" be put together. It took me preparing, organizing, and physically moving things into a new space.
God wants NEW for us, He wants to bring us into the promises of what He has for our lives, but sometimes the process of getting there can be painful, and it certainly isn't always easy,
"I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit." (John 15:1-2)
Pruning doesn't really bring a pleasant experience to mind, but if you've ever grown anything, you know that it is necessary for healthy growth to continue. In the same way, God helps us lay down old habits, thought patterns, relationships, sin, and lifestyles because He loves us TOO MUCH to leave us there, when He knows the places He wants to bring us!! But it's hard to get higher up on the mountain when your bags are heavy.
hGod gives us everything we need to take the next steps, He gives us the map of His word, the trail guide of His Holy Spirit, the team of His church to walk alongside us, and His VERY OWN strength burning within us! But God will never force us. He will give us the tools, and lead us to the trail, but it is up to us to STEP, and as we do, He helps us along the way.
There is no solo-mattress moving across the house when God is involved in your story, He goes with us every step of the way! With each step we take towards Him, He will help us to lay down the heavy things in our backpacks that we can't take up the rest of the mountain. As we walk closer to God, we become more keenly aware of how uncomfortable it is to hike with equipment that was never meant for hiking (Again with the metaphors, I know #sorrynotsorry).
New is hard, yes, but GOD IS BIGGER. God is bigger than that bad habit, God is bigger than that insecurity. God is bigger than that toxic relationship. God is bigger than that addiction.
HE IS BIGGER!!!
The unknown and unfamiliar can be scary, even if it's good, but aren't you glad that our God specializes in MAKING THINGS NEW! It's what He does. And when we know WHO HE IS we can trust Him with the unknowns, because He is for us, not against and He is cheering us on with every step we take. Praise God for NEW!