While visiting my parents in Kentucky over Thanksgiving, we took a drive to some old home sites and places I grew up. One drive took us to a small town where I had originally thought I’d go to college. My husband pulled the car into the entrance gate and my mind played back the scene as I looked through the car windows and recalled the last time I was there…
My plans were made, and in my heart, my future was set. As a senior in high school, I thought I was sure what God wanted for me. I would attend a local college, literally up the road.
I would live at home.
I would become a nurse and serve the Lord with that ministry.
It was settled.
Then one Friday night I drove through the entrance of the college pictured above for a weekend visit of the campus. This was a time for perspective students to visit and get an idea of what college life was like on this campus. It was labeled as a Christian school. I was excited about that, because Christ is my Savior, and I desired to live my life and be in places that honored Him. I had visited a large Christian university in another state earlier that year, just for a fun weekend, and was so impressed with the spiritual temperature of the campus and in the lives of the students.
However, what I had anticipated seeing and hearing on this weekend was not at all what I saw or heard. Though this was supposed to be a Christian school, that was definitely not the testimony I witnessed. I was heartbroken. At the end of my visit, I got in my car, pulled away from the school, and cried the 15 minute ride home.
I couldn’t have been more sure that God was saying a firm, “No” to all my plans.
At the time I remember how devastated I was. I wasn’t sure what I would do now. I had literally had the rug pulled out from under my feet.
I cried and I prayed.
I also talked with my parents, whom I knew were much wiser, and would give me godly counsel. I suggested the Christian college that I had visited earlier in the year, but they had valid concerns and they lovingly said, “No.”
When you’re an 18 girl who is a child of God, and you live at home, have no job, or no idea about where to get an education, you quickly enroll in the school of prayer. As I submitted to my parents counsel, and prayed for God’s direction, He provided me with a job at the Coca Cola Bottling Company, working in the accounting department. That was totally of the Lord, seeing I had NO experience in this field, and didn’t even do super well in my math classes!
I went to work there, and enjoyed my life as a young single adult, all the while praying that if God would allow, He would open the door for me to attend the Christian college eight hours from my home. In the middle of the year, my mom asked if I was still desiring to attend school there. I answered that I was. She gave me their blessing! I finished out the summer working at Coca Cola and prepared to leave in the fall.
That move to the large Christian university in September changed the direction of my life forever and in wonderful ways.
God’s timing was perfect.
His provision was complete.
His grace was sufficient.
His plan was perfect because He is God.
I learned some really important lessons during those months of waiting and wondering that have served me well as an adult. In my mind’s eye, when I visit that driveway of the other school, I don’t just remember God shutting that door, I remember the lessons I learned about trusting Him, the sweetness of prayer, and of Him opening the next door – in His time and in His perfect way.
What are you waiting for today? God’s will to be revealed? A test result? A mate? A provision? An answer? Don’t give up and do your own thing. You can trust God with every detail that He will arrange in His sovereign ways. Wait and trust. You’ll be glad you did.