Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Dreaming about the Future

Today, it hit me. In one year, we'll be graduating from seminary. That means in one year, we'll be moving on. Taking the next step. Relocating. Will that be geographical? I don't know. I think so, but I'm not in charge. I can't make things happen or create an opportunity that will work. 

Today, we sent an email with our resumes to a potential "next step." It sounds like a small detail that should get lost in the immediacy of papers to write, vocab words to learn, events to plan, neighbors to visit, and friends to see. But it has consumed me. The thought of the future-- the unknown, the potential, the "yet to come but on the horizon"-- animates me like black coffee in the morning. It makes my heart race. It distracts me from things like the syntax diagram in my hand or the dirty dishes in the sink. It distracts me from the now. 

Today, I was reminded that I am a dreamer. God created me, fashioned me, with a sense of adventure. For me, "the next step" is like the chapter following a cliffhanger that is so tantalizing, putting the book down isn't an option. I'd rather keep going and bite my nails down to stubs and lose sleep and have to sneak under the covers to see what's next than to wait it out. In fact, waiting often doesn't feel like an option for me. I may try to let it go, but the still unclear vision of the future-- and all its accompanying questions-- finds its way back into my mind over and over again, like a song on repeat.

Today, God met me with His love. He affirmed my desire to know, my excitement about what's next, and my eagerness to see what He will do. But He also reminded me of my inability to make it happen. He confirmed the fact that I can't force an answer out of the people looking at our resumes, and I can't make them choose us. He reminded me that I can't make this year go faster and I can't work out all of its details. He reminded me that not too long ago, Dallas was "the next step," and it was nothing like I envisioned. I couldn't have dreamed up this season of life, and in fact, what I did have "planned" proved to be far inferior to what God actually had in store. In getting us here, He showed up and showed off. He confirmed that He is in charge, and that He cares about the details that I sit endlessly contemplating. And He reminded me, kindly, that He is far more competent in addressing them than I am. 

Today, He invited me to trust Him with the future, and to be fully present where I am. He provided for this season, and He did so on purpose. I have a year left of important stuff to do. And if I spend this whole year living in a fantasy-future, I'll be less prepared for reality's future. I'll miss some of what God has for me now; and now is never wasted with Him. Every minute He asks me to wait is for a purpose. And every minute I choose to release to Him the tension in my stomach that screams, "what's next?" is a minute of great significance. 



the hannahs said...

Whoa, thanks so much for sharing this, Hannah. God's gifted you with such wisdom and a gift for communicating it with others. This post was a great reminder and blessing to me today! I'll be praying for you and Mike for the now and the future!

Nchao said...

Hi hannah!
Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the future. This was a great reminder for me to let go of the fear and need to control everything and to trust in God to give us what we need in life. It's something I've been learning more about these past couple of years. Miss you!