I should be writing nursing diagnoses for my most recent patient,
or studying the heart for my test tomorrow,
or emptying the dishwasher,
or a million other things.
You know the feeling, I'm sure.
But instead, I'm sitting here at our desk, staring over my left shoulder at this most incredible view.
And yet at the same time, it's times like these - when I'm overwhelmed, tired, and alone - that it's so easy to dwell on the past...
Like how wonderful it used to be to live near lots of close girlfriends, where we could meet down the street for coffee at a moment's notice.
Or how I wish I were closer to certain people that used to be such a huge part of my life.
Or how much more useful I used to feel for Jesus when I was backpacking in the Amazon or sharing the Gospel with cab drivers in Chicago... not sitting in my little house on the prairie studying notes.
Do you see how easy it is to be robbed of joy? I let it happen all too often. And yet every time Satan tries to swoop in on a moment of beauty and calm and replace it with turmoil, the Lord so gently reminds me of this:
"Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland."
I am so guilty.
I'm guilty of dwelling on the past, of not "perceiving" the "new thing" He is doing. Like what about how He led me to nursing school, allowed me to get in, and has provided every penny? Or how He fuels our dreams for the future and so graciously centers them on serving Him? Or how He loves on us with sweet friends, encouraging conversations, captivating worship music. The list goes on and on. So why do I not notice all of these things? Because I'm not looking for them. I get lazy - and I'm not daily asking, "Your will be done, Lord" and then praying that He'll show me what that looks like.
I'm also guilty of thinking that the things I do bring me closer to God.
"If I could only just be in full-time ministry...."Somehow I fail to understand that when I say something like that, I am going directly against the Gospel - the truth that it is He who works in me, not me who works my way to Him.
Maybe this sounds like lots of rambling. Or maybe it's what you've been struggling with lately and that verse from Isaiah is precisely what you needed to hear. It amazes me how God's Word can travel deeper into your soul than anything else - how things you didn't even know needed to be dealt with rise to the surface when you read the Word.
I pray I'll remember the Gospel in moments like these, and choose to look for the new thing He is doing.