People have a misconception that when something doesn’t work out, it must mean the person pursuing it wasn’t in the will of God. “Maybe next time you should seek Him more” is one of my favorite (okay, I’m being sarcastic) compassionately judgmental statements to hear. It’s the perfect cherry to top off my knee rug burn, blue in the face sundae. Like truly, thank you for reminding me that though this opportunity had me face-to-floor regularly, I still can’t boast its longevity!

As people, we have to learn that undesirable outcomes don’t always indicate output deficiencies. Mathematics isn’t equations as we know them on earth in Heaven, so prayer + opportunity won’t always yield stability. God is far more complex than linearity and knows we stand to gain far more from perceived failures than we do perceived wins. What this means is that although 17 year veteran Carmichael started treating you like the scum of the earth when he found out you were leaving Dunder Mifflin, Inc. after just a year of service and 34 year wife Susan started hyperventilating when she found out you and your fiancé called off your engagement, God’s plan very well could’ve stationed you at that job and in that relationship *gasp* (insert face screaming in fear emoji) TEMPORARILY. That’s right, ‘then’ doesn’t automatically mean ‘now’ and ‘now’ won’t always equal ‘forever.’ God intends for certain people, places, and things to serve you transitionally.

When I think about how this message fits into my life, I consider all the “you’re scatterbrained,” “I just think you should stay put for once,” “what about perseverance?” comments I’ve heard in 27 years. Instead of becoming offended though, I meditate about how limiting it is to believe the presence of the Lord only exists where there’s permanence and how dangerous it is to believe It exists everywhere there’s permanence, and feel sorry for those who live in either box. To me, putting my faith in a living, moving God means being willing to see my way out of situations that are unlike Him…immediately. It also means being more concerned with obedience than with appearing settled.

Today, if this message strikes a nerve, you have some evaluating to do. How long are you willing to stay where God has called you out of for the sake of putting on appearances? Maybe the opinions of others isn’t your issue, but you’re tired of being on the waning side of the whole ‘bloom where you’re planted’ mantra and deeply want to belong someplace and flourish there. Either way, faking won’t be beneficial, only listening will. Put your ear to the sky like you’ve done time and time again, and trust your process. Have full faith in your connection with God, being sure to regularly remind yourself that through all – the good, the bad, the temporary, and the everlasting – He’s there. Take the advice and convictions of the people whose lives have been too simple to understand you with a grain of salt and sell yourself to the idea that the devotion that got you to this place can take you elsewhere. Just because you keep finding yourself in temporary situations doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you; maybe your future requires you to have more practice than everybody else. Remember, wise = weathered. Keep following The Cloud (Numbers 9:17).

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