I’ve been thinking over the past couple days about, of course, one of my favorite topics: change. It’s the beginning of a new semester of school, so it’s a time of transition for me—which I’m hating, because I’m still in the midst of my back-to-America transition, and having to add the back-to-school transition on top of that. And I’m overwhelmed and going crazy with all that life is throwing me, and all I want to do is sleep all day and pretend I don’t have to deal with any of it (or maybe that’s just my current headache talking).
But anyway. I’m not here to complain about any of these transitions (really) because I know that God has big plans in store and I am trusting completely in that. What I am here to talk about is the fact that God knows so much better than we do what we need and when we need it, and the past few days I have just seriously been in awe of that. So I have to be candid for a minute, which is going to be super weird for me—because while I am used to sharing a lot about what God is doing in my life here on this blog, I never go into a ton of detail about my real personal life. But here we go.
Three years ago, I was dating this guy who I thought was absolutely perfect. I thought he was such an incredible person and precisely what I wanted in a boyfriend, etc., so down the road when we broke up, I was devastated. I prayed and I prayed for a while that God would bring us back together and that that relationship would work out because I wanted so badly for us to be together. I thought he was what I wanted. And it took a long, long time for me to come to terms with the fact that we were not meant to be together.
So fast forward to last October; my friend Ashley and I were driving through Athens one night talking about how things change, and I brought up that guy, who by that point I was over wishing things had worked out with. And Ashley said, “One of the best feelings in the world is knowing God is good even though you didn’t get what you thought you wanted.” It hit me hard then and it’s been hitting me hard over and over again this past week when I think about that statement. That guy I was dating three years ago—as much as I thought I wanted him to be “the one” or whatever back then, I am so thankful now that that wasn’t the case. Don’t get me wrong, I think he’s a great person and the right guy for some girl to marry someday, but he’s not the one for me. I didn’t see that then, but I am so thankful for a God that knows better than I do. When Ashley said it—”you didn’t get what you thought you wanted”—thought. There are a lot of things I think I want; it is the best feeling to know that through all of that, God is always good and he’s never wrong. We are. I am. I’m wrong all the time in thinking I know what’s best for me.
Psalm 37:4 says, “Take delight in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” I used to read that as if we delight in him, God will give us what we ask for. And then one day about a year ago, it clicked: when we delight in the Lord, he will tell us what to ask for. He will make clear to you what your desires are. Yes, he answers our prayers and gives us our desires, but he also changes those desires to line up with what his will is for our lives—which may mean those things you think you want are going to shift.
And my desires have been changing over the past couple months. Leading up to this summer, I was in a pretty dry season spiritually, but now that I am out of it (why is it always easier to talk about those things after the fact?), I’m able to clearly see the goodness of the Lord and his plans for my life, and in walking with him, he’s changing my desires to match his will: for school, for career, for relationships. So for the past few days as I’ve been reflecting on that, and reflecting on what Ashley said to me a year ago, all I can do is be in awe of the greatness of our God—that he didn’t give me what I thought I wanted, because the plan he has for me is so beyond what I could ever dream of myself.