Definition of process: a series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end.
Yesterday at fellowship (our weekly spiritual gathering) my pastor asked what the definition of process was. It is discussed in our latest lesson and the first word that came to me was “stages”. “It’s developmental stages,” I said. He nodded his head in fond agreement–because he is more of a father than a pastor–and proceeded to read the real definition (listed above). I was close. We talked about the “means” of a process being a vehicle and it’s pretty clear to me God has used and continues to use processes in my life (and I’m sure in yours) to bring about an intended purpose.
Every month I go through a process at work. For almost a year now I have been battling in this process. It has been so intense it has felt like labor. But my personality is one that loves a good challenge so even though I get stressed out and overwhelmed I strive to complete the process. And do better next time. If you’ve read this blog for any amount of significant time you know my career has always been a process. Doors do not open easily and usually only after a lengthy waiting period. As a result I’ve probably valued them (open doors) a little more than I would have otherwise (and even do I dare to say a little more than those who get opportunities easily.) So I have tried and tried to endure this process and achieve success by my own terms. Not in comparison to someone else’s ability (who would probably find my process less difficult) but in comparison to my former self.
Then there is the process of my love life. Again, lots of waiting. I shared with my pastors yesterday my frustration/anger at the process. They nodded in understanding. They are good people. They have walked with God over 40 years and still are able to empathize with my little struggles.
I don’t know what my future holds concerning these current processes, I only know the Father has been faithful to order my steps. He knows me through and through.
I trust Him to have mercy where I need mercy and grace where I need grace.
In other news, some good times lately…
Have you ever started on a journey or set out to achieve a goal that was going to take some perseverance and stamina? I remember starting undergrad. I was so excited about this new adventure of going to college. I shopped with my family to pick up the items I needed for my dorm. I got my hair braided so I wouldn’t have to worry about it for a few months. I said goodbye to my fiancé because I believed that going to school was even more important than our relationship. I was committed. But senior year after being slaughtered in Accounting and Finance for two years I fought tears of fear that I just may not finish on time. I feared that God would somehow prolong my time in underground to prove some type of point. At the root of this thinking I can see now that I didn’t trust Him. But thankfully He didn’t hold this against me. I graduated on time, passed my Accounting class and made my way back home to start the next chapter of my life.
Often these days I feel like I did my senior year of school. I wonder, “Will I get there on time?” It is easy to have faith and encouragement at the beginning of a new season but after a while most people run out of zeal. I surely did.
I had a super encouraging conversation with a brother yesterday. He has been through his own set of trials and setbacks and is a little older. God has used him many times in my life. He said to wait for God’s best. He said that we are the chosen and that’s why God has been so specific with our course. I appreciated his sharing but was honest in my response: “I do not like the process”, I said. “It feels overwhelming”.
I can see the patterns of mountain experiences before the valley. I can see the trials that surface during transition periods, often in my career. I can see the waiting inside the waiting inside the waiting; only to be followed with more stretching. I appreciate the blessings and the encouragement and the over the top manifestations Christ has given to endure. But I sometimes wish we didn’t have to endure.
Yesterday, while talking to my brother I felt led to worship. I was so encouraged in my spirit that I knew, this is how God is going to keep me moving forward. He will keep encouraging me with experiences like these.
We need encouragement and hope to keep moving forward, otherwise why would we choose to?
I’m aware people can be extra moody during the holidays. Those of us who are more sensitive can be even more so around this time. Even still, I think its good to be honest about how we feel. And its even better when we can do it with others who have walked this path and can empathize with its rocky course.
FuN selfie 😉