“Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”
Yesterday was my first official day as a resident at the Austin Stone. It was filled with a bunch of new names, faces, and environments that I will be serving with for at least the next two years of my life. So many thoughts and expectations consumed my head as I woke up to start the day. It seems as if just the other week I was waking up to anxiously get ready for my first day of college, not knowing anyone or anything about how to live as an independent guy who actually cleaned his own room. Now I was waking up to go to my first day of work in a city where I hardly knew anybody that I work with and assuming a role that I never thought God would have me submit to. At age 22 life has quickly and swiftly passed me by. As I begin this new season that Christ has called me into, I can say that I have started to experience the scriptures in a new way. In James 4:14, James is speaking to the Jewish Christians scattered among all the nations. He specifically speaks to those who tried to direct their plans and boast in their tomorrow as we can see in verse 13:
“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit.'”
Sound familiar? Been there! Still there! If God has humbled me to learn anything through out my years of college leading into this next season of my life, it’s that I do not direct my steps but rather the Lord.
“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.” – Psalms 37:23
Entering into this new season of life and ministry, I can confidently and joyfully say that I have done nothing to get to where I am now. By grace and mercy alone has God carried me down the road that He has so faithfully desired for my life. It is so freeing to know that what is unknown to the human finite mind is nothing new to the all-knowing, all-seeing God of the universe, and I know He will continue to show His sovereignty and goodness toward me for the mission of His Gospel. I have delighted in everything He has taken and given me. The good and the bad — He uses it all.
So as I begin this new chapter of my life with excitement, I also find myself reminding my heart that I am not here on my works or abilities alone. For me, this looks like waking up, pulling my bible out, and remembering that just as Jesus submitted to the will of the Father to the point of DEATH on a cross, I have to continually submit to the Father and crucify my flesh daily, knowing that my agenda can not be the headline or above the will of God for my life. I can not wait to see what God does through the life of the church here at the Austin Stone and simply be a part of His plan, not mine.