The Bench/Prep Mode From the time we exit our mother's womb, until the time we depart earth, we experience many different situations. Seeing as how God is the Creator of our lives, He knows exactly what we'll go through, long before it even reaches us. Now, because we know that God is perfect and loving, we are able to understand that He made no mistakes in creating us. Sure, sometimes life can be hard and confusing, you may not know what you are supposed to be doing in life, heck, even if you do, you may not know how to get to where you want to be. You've set a plan and you have goals, yet every time you try to attain these goals, something goes wrong! You can't understand for the life of you why YOUR way isn't working out right. "What am I doing wrong?" you ask yourself. "Maybe I should do this instead," you say. So you keep trying to do things in a way that is pleasing to YOU! Nothing works... You become anxious, stressed, and eventually hopeless, because you don't know what YOU need to do next. Let me be the first to admit that I have been in this same boat. I went through a period in my life where I thought I had everything figured out--I was headed in the right direction, I had finally reached a high point in my life. Until it all came crashing down. I couldn't understand why this was happening to me. I started to lose the passion for what I thought for so long was my purpose. I was so lost and confused because up until this point, my "purpose" was the only thing that had never let me down. It was the only thing I had to look forward to in life, so why was my drive fading away? Since people would always tell me to pray about it, that's what I started to do. I believed that being a Registered Nurse was my calling, so I started to pray to God and ask Him to give me my focus again. Time passed and things only started to get worse, I was drifting so far off and I saw little hope of ever succeeding in life. After years of being depressed and hopeless, I didn't know what to do. Then it happened, I had finally reached the bottom... My lowest and darkest point in life. I tried this thing called "faith," but it didn't work for me. Little did I know, I really wasn't practicing faith at all. I was crying out, my heart was broken, my body was lifeless. I went to church, I joined, I was baptized, and I became a faithful member. I started to gain color again, life was being breathed into my body before my very eyes, but there was still something missing. I asked God to help me to be a better person so I could live a better life. Things were still getting better, then suddenly, my life reached a standstill. I was stuck in this same place, not knowing what to do because I didn't know my purpose. At this point, I was convinced that it wasn't what I always presumed it to be. I questioned God because I figured I was doing everything I was supposed to. I'd given my life to CHRIST and I was no longer involved in in most of the mess I once was... I was trying to do better, but that wasn't enough. Here I was again, pleading to the Lord to free me from this dead end that I'd reached in life. Then one day, out of no where, I heard a voice say, "You aren't doing what I have called you to do." I sat silently, thinking to myself, Okay, God, I hear you... I want what You want for me. Not too long after this, God began to reveal new things to me and He provided me with plenty of confirmation. This is when I told myself nothing else mattered. I started to step out of my shell and do things I could never imagine, like publicly praying. I even joined the choir at my church, which prior to this point were fears of mine. I realized that God was answering my prayers. I'd told Him I wanted to be obedient to Him, so whatever He told me to do, I would do without hesitation. I asked Him to remove the fear and doubt from my heart and to replace it with faith, so He started to put me in situations that increased my faith and trust in Him. The Game This was the beginning of the game for me. Here's what I mean:
One night, I went to sleep at around 12:00a.m., much like I usually do. Close to 6:00a.m. I abruptly awoke and didn't know why, but I knew God was behind it. So, I read a few chapters of the bible, then decided I would attempt to sleep again. As I drifted off, I saw a huge football field, could've been the Superdome, but hey, I really don't know. So as I saw this football field, I also saw a bench where some of the redshirt players were seated (these are the players that don't actually play for some period of time). Apparently, the coach figured one of the benched players had prepared enough, and that he was ready to play, so he called him into the game. In that moment, God spoke to me and said, "Just as this player has been benched while preparing to enter the game, you've been doing the same." He said, "These first 20 years of your life have been your preparation period for what I have in store for you, but now it's time for you to get off the bench!" I was astonished. Then God started to show me more of the game. Once the player was on the field, I saw that he had fire burning in the pits of belly. This is what he was born to do; it was not only his passion, but his purpose! The other team was in control of the ball, and when the quarter back went to throw the ball to the receiver, the player from the opposite team with the fire burning in his belly, caught the ball. HE'D GOTTEN AN INTERCEPTION!!! Once in control of the ball, he took off as if his life depended on it. None of the opposing team players could touch him, not only because his teams defense was so good, but because this ball was meant for him and NO ONE else! Needless to say, he scored a touch down! At this point, God spoke again, "Now it's time for you to step onto the playing field, you've been training long enough." He said, "Much like the player was representing his coach and the rest of his team, You are representing me, and now it is time for you to do what I have called you to do." I was elated! God wasn't finished though, He went on to say, "Don't be afraid Teachia, because just as the football player had a strong team to support and defend him, I have people in place that will work with you and help you along the way. Now is the time, and I have full confidence that you will fulfill what I have put before you, just as the player scored the touch down and made his coach proud!" I opened my eyes and couldn't believe this revelation He'd placed within me. This made me fully confident and aware of my purpose, which is to help people understand and recognize that they have amazing purposes in God. This revelation has just recently resonated in my soul. I now understand that all those times I was trying to figure things out for MYSELF, God was telling me to not lean on my own understanding, but instead acknowledge Him in all of my ways and He will continue to direct my paths. We are NOT equipped to do things on our own, God wants us to lean on Him and to trust Him in every situation, no matter how much you may be going through or how hard a situation may seem. God CAN and WILL turn it around for you, IF you allow Him to! So today, I choose to live a life lead by Christ, and I encourage you to do the same. Stop trying to do everything for and by yourself, because you will fail EVERY TIME! God did not equip us to work alone. First we must recognize that we need Him, then we will be able to recognize that we need the help of other people as well. Even when God gives you your purpose you won't be able to fulfill it alone. Just as the football player had teammates to help him, God has put people in place to help you with your purpose. Don't try to figure out who those people are, because as you reach the next level in your purpose, God will make it crystal clear to you! As for now and forever, acknowledge God, realize that you were made to serve Him and fulfill His purpose for you. Love others, and forgive those who've hurt you. ALWAYS REnew your mind. Remain steadfast in the Word of God, so that you will be able to discern between things that are and are NOT of Him. Be happy and honor God. Don't get weary in good doing, and remain humble at all times. Then, you'll really experience life.