Part 3 “Holding on to Faith”
“Take a leap of faith.” I remember when I told my fiance this statement. I’m not even sure why I had to ease his mind when he first began pursuing me. I guess, even though he wanted to be with me, he was still nervous and unsure about what the future held for us. So I said the first thing that came to mind, “take a leap of faith.” This was the statement that started it all. I didn’t know what the outcome would be, but I knew we had to have faith. As a believer in Christ, many difficulties come with having faith in an expected outcome. After all, faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things unseen. (Hebrews 11:1) In the very beginning, I’d hoped Barry and I weren’t making a mistake by getting together. After making our relationship official, all we could do was hold on to faith.
Imagine asking someone to pass you the remote, but receiving the response, “in due season.” You would never wait long for something you can clearly see. For that reason, you would get up and grab what you wanted and resume watching television. We do this all the time with God. We assume it’s as easy as handing over a remote. We want the Lord to give us what clearly belongs to us. It is clear the television can’t function without the navigation of the remote. But faith is: even if you see the remote, will you still trust God, despite Him not handing it to you? Faith is also: you can’t seem to find the remote for yourself, but do you trust that you will find it soon? And can you function without it until then? Faith equals wait. Moses had to have the same faith that the Red Sea would part. I’m sure his arms were tired, and he probably thought he looked crazy holding up the rod. However, the Bible says he waited. AND ALL THAT NIGHT he waited as the Lord drove back the sea. (Exodus 14:21) He didn’t walk up to the water and demand that it be parted. Instead, Moses waited. Can you wait?
We had so many chances to get together -so many, I tell you. So what changed that made Barry decide to finally ask me to be in a relationship? I had just graduated, and we were both heading out to grad school. All we really had was the summer to truly be together. I had to keep telling myself God knew what He was doing. And for the times I didn’t feel that way, I just had to trust in Him.
I constantly thought the odds were stack against us. When the summer had come to an end, we packed up our bags and headed into the unknown. We drove to Orlando so he could begin graduate school, and I continued on to South Florida for my first semester, as well. In my rear-view mirror, I watched as my Alma-mater lost her grandeur -getting smaller and smaller as I drove further away. Soon, she became but a small speck, forcing me to look forward and drive ahead. After arriving to Orlando, I had to repeat the same thing moments later. I had to watch my new boyfriend of only a month wave goodbye to me, while holding on to the faith that this relationship would work. I felt like I was saying goodbye forever. I wondered if God really had a plan for us. Was this leap worth it? Or, would I be hurt from the plunge?
Sometimes, God asks us to leap to get us to the other side of our journey. However, we are too afraid to exercise this type of faith. We then take our time to build our own bridge to get to the other side. But God is our safety net. So if he asks you to leap, it means He will catch you if you fall. However, I wanted to take the lead in this relationship. I wanted things to be on my own timeline. I leaped, assuming that was the hard part, and now we could do what we wanted. But God had a plan for our journey. The same goes for the time I professed Christ as my Lord and Savior, got baptized, and even dedicated and rededicated my life to Christ. I often assumed that was all it took to showcase my faith. Instead, God uses these moment as building blocks and muscle memory in trusting Him. He wanted to know if I truly trusted Him to take us and our relationship to the place we were meant to dwell.
I didn’t always enjoy exercising
that type of faith. I fear the unknown and not being able to see what lies ahead. It frightens me. It leads me to feel vulnerable to things around me. Not only that, but I also hate waiting. I can be impatient, and that makes me uncomfortable. Once grad school began, we had to trust one another and have faith. Between being able to see one another once a month, working on our individual thesis projects, working part-time, and being active in other endeavors, it seemed impossible. But we focused on what was important at the time. Though I didn’t always see it this way, I had to hold on to faith and trust in our relationship’s elasticity and durability. In the beginning of our relationship, we prayed for God to be at the center and foundation of it all. And if He truly was, we didn’t have to constantly look down to make sure the foundation was intact; we simply walked knowing that what was beneath us was able to sustain us.
Barry and I can never say we truly always knew we would make it to this point. We had hiccups and some roadblocks, but we just held on to faith and love. All that we hoped for in one another and in our relationship wasn’t always seen, but it drove us to continue to work towards it. In serving God, there is a constant tug-of-war on whether or not all of this is worth it. As humans, we would like to quickly see the fruit of our labor. Even when we say we will wait, we are usually thinking along a timeline, to a certain extent. There were times when I cried, prayed, pleaded, and sought answers. I didn’t always receive them, but I held on as hard as I could. I didn’t want give up on our commitment. I had to learn that my faith was never really to Barry, but rather in Christ, who lived in him. If we are truly children of God, it is no longer us who lives, but Christ in us. (Galatians 2:20) I had to trust that Christ’s nature, character, and impressions were all stamped on him, and that his commitment to God would help him be committed to me. I know that as long as both of us are connected to the source, there shouldn’t be confusion or lack from one another. Instead, it’s the faith in who we serve that will keep us together. Therefore, how long are you willing to hold on to what you want God’s blessing on?
The thing about faith is that your natural eyes can never lead you. You are forever blind to all you see until God gives you His eyes to see what He sees. Only then can you finally understand why things happened the way they did and needed your full cooperation and faith to hold on to.
Stay tuned for part 4