12.18.2008

Getting Hit with the God bat and Getting into the Wheelbarrow

Even though I was in transition, I did put my faith on the table from day one with future DH. He knew it was important to me, it was becoming more important to him, and that brought us together in our faith journey. I was a bit more involved with the young adult group than he was and attended the young adult night where folks talked about a conference they attended. There lives were transformed by it and they were on fire upon their return. I was amazed. I wanted that! and yet, I didn't. Because I was comfortable. Because I knew that if I changed too fast, future DH and I might have to deal with a divide. I was torn. I wanted to be balanced. I wanted to be faithful and a good Catholic. But I also wanted to fit in this world and not be too "weird." I decided to go to the conference the next year, but I literally prayed to God to not change me too much. Ha! This is one prayer God knew better than to answer as I would like.
I remember once hearing friends from faith group share their testimony. I didn’t even know what a testimony was! I learned it was sharing that turning point in your life where you really came to God. Well, I thought, maybe everyone who is faithful doesn’t have a testimony. Maybe that is just how it always was for them. Like me, I'd always had faith. But when the young adult director asked me what my relationship was with God, I didn’t even realize I was supposed to or could have one!!! I was just so far off the mark in my life.
But God has a story in mind for me too; one that he was still writing in my life. That conference was really another huge turning point for me.
First of all, I felt like a fraud taking my birth control every day there. I kept trying to tell myself I was balanced again. That was my excuse. But then the keynote directly addressed this. The speaker spoke of being on a tightrope, and if we had one foot on and one foot off what were we-a goner! He kept talking about God directing our lives in a metaphor, that God was equipped and had proven time and time again that he could push us in a wheelbarrow across a tightrope over the Niagra falls. But if we've seen Him do it time and time again successfully, why were we not willing to get in? I thought to myself, I am in the wheelbarrow. I do let God direct my life. Ha! The rest of the conference God whispered in my ear, "is this you letting me push you in the wheelbarrow?" "How about now? Are you in the wheelbarrow?" I was clearly not letting God direct my life. I wasn't trusting Him even though I knew He was capable. Why not? For me, I knew that meant that I needed to follow God's will, not mine. I needed to follow the church's teaching on premarital sex and contraception. But this was so hard. I was already "in." Could I change?! Of course, if I wanted to. Did I want to? I wasn't so sure. But then I realized if I didn't follow God's will, I was telling Him to get out of that area of my life. Did I really want to do that? Was I prepared for those consequences?! I would be tying God's hands to bless my future marriage. I felt for the first time in my life that God was asking me to do something. The choice was in front of me. I could say no, but I couldn't deny being asked. Either way, the consequences would be drastic. It was the true test of trust. I prayed and pondered this throughout the weekend. I wanted to trust Him. To get in the wheelbarrow. Could I? Not without His help. The final straw was when I went up for communion on the last day of the conference. I was behind a guy whose back of his t-shirt read the verse from Revelation 3:16-“So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.” Needless to say, my choice was made. I was nervous about what was ahead, but I knew it was the right choice and that God was with me. So, with God's help, I was finally in the wheelbarrow.

5 comments:

ALIVEINHOPE said...

I wondered where you got the name for your blog... :)

WheelbarrowRider said...

You are the best ever for taking the time to go back and read my blog! It warms my heart! I think the way I did it (not in real time, not sharing it publically until just last fall-way after the fact), in hindsight was a mistake. Thank you thank you thank you for reading! I hope you like what you find and find it helpful! Thank you for commenting-it's a great way to say "alive in hope was here!" Suggestions/feedback always welcome!

Karen said...

What an amazing story! There are several pieces to your story that mirror mine. I really love that verse in Revelation. It is one that has really helped shape my life over the last few years.

WheelbarrowRider said...

Karen,
Thanks for following, reading back, and commenting so I know you were here. I really appreciate it. Feel free to email me anytime. I would love to hear your story sometime!

Leila said...

I love this!! And that verse has great meaning to me, too! Amazing! Thank you so much for sharing this. God has done something incredible with your (willing) soul! :)