Those 3 verses speak volumes to me. In fact, much of the 1st chapter of James speaks to me. Loudly.
Not to long ago, I was on the verge of losing everything. And I mean everything. Utilities were going to be shut off (or had been). I couldn't get my kids the things they needed. Or wanted. Some months, we had to raid our change jar for a loaf of bread. It was bad. During that time, my depression was the worst it had EVER been. I felt lost. Hopeless. Worthless.
I believed that God had a plan for me. But, when I would pray for some kind of breakthrough, be it financial, personal, emotional, job wise...whatever, I would never fully believe that the Lord would answer those prayers. While I believed in God and answered prayers, I didn't believe He would answer MY prayers.
For so long, I would glance at the sky and ask the Lord why He was doing this to me? Why was He allowing these things to happen to me? When would it be MY turn?
It's okay to question God. It's how you ASK the question that makes all the difference....
One day, tears streaming down my face, another disconnect notice in my hand, I sat down on my bed. Head in my hands I said to the Lord "Okay, I give up. I completely give myself to whatever your Will is for me. Lord, what do YOU want me to do?"
And the answer came. And, I wasn't very happy with the answer at first.
Another door---the LAST door available to me--in the field I was working in (Personal Trainer) slammed shut. I was out of options. With a heavy heart, I hung up my trainer hat.
I was devastated at first. I had spent so much time and energy trying to build something. But, I was so wrapped up what I wanted that I failed to see that it wasn't what the Lord wanted for me. He kept shutting doors and I kept attempting to kick them back open. I would ask the Lord for a sign and then ignore the sign when it pointed to me leaving that field. I wanted what I wanted. And I expected the Lord to give it to me.
But, as we all know, God's plans for us far surpass any plans we could have for ourselves.
I got a job offer the day I decided to leave the fitness industry. All of a sudden, things started to fall into place. I am in school. I am happy. I am supporting my family.
But, more than that, I am fullfilling God's plan for me. I am working in the nursing industry using the skills God gave me to be a caregiver. I love my job. I am the happiest I have been in a long time.
Almost 2 weeks ago, Satan tested me in a major way. I was involved in a car accident. One week into my new job, one week before classes started, and I wrecked my car. I had no transportation. No way to get to work or school. Or to the grocery store. Tearfully, I thought that this was a sign that God didn't want me doing what I was doing.
I quickly learned that it wasn't God. It was Satan. And the outcome of this event was going to depend on how I reacted to this situation. So, I praised God that we all were okay. I praised God when I discovered my car could be fixed. And I praised God when I was able to pay the repair bill. On my own. With no help from family. For the first time in MY LIFE I faced a major expense and dealt with it, on my own.
God is working in my life in amazing ways. I can't even begin to explain the joy that is in my heart. Or how I believe, 100% , beyond all doubts, that with God, I can do ANYTHING.