Rugrats was one of my favorite shows growing up. For anyone who’s unfamiliar or needs a recap, Rugrats was an animated show that focused on a group of babies and toddlers and their wild adventures. Some of the main characters were Tommy, Chuckie, Phil, Lil, and Angelica. In short, Tommy was the adventurous leader, Chuckie was scared of his own shadow, Phil and Lil were eccentric twins, and Angelica was a bully. Growing up I longed to be Tommy but more identified with Chuckie. I was timid and shy. But recently, I realized I’ve grown to be a Tommy. I most identify with Tommy in the area of faith. I see myself as bold in my faith and expectant of God for His promises to come to pass. I had gotten frustrated recently and I questioned why God had me where I was at. I felt isolated, like, I didn’t have fellow bold people around to encourage me. I think my spirit had to be reminded that people didn’t have to be geographically close to me to encourage me. I was also reminded that no matter how difficult the journey may seem; God always has a way to refresh me at the right time.
“I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.” Jeremiah 31: 25
That’s when I thought of Tommy. Was I placed where I was at to be the Tommy of my group? Not in the sense of leading wild adventures but in the area of faith walk. Metaphorically, I see myself carrying a lit torch leading people. Am I called to encourage people with my bold faith walk? Are you?
At my moment of discouragement, I was reminded to press on. I’ve heard a lot of messages recently about challenges and being broken. These messages each have an undertone of trials and training. As weary as the process may be, I’m hanging in there because I know I’ll be able to benefit in some way.
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6: 9
As I wind down my job search for a full-time position after completing my MBA, I thought waiting was the worst part of the process but actually not having anything to wait for or hope for is the ultimate worst. That signifies a loss of hope, imagination, creativity and honestly loss of trust in God. God is never done with us. I believe He plants dreams in us through our entire time on Earth that are in His will for us to complete.
“When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” (Psalm 139: 15-16)
“In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works everything in conformity with the purpose of his will.” (Ephesians 1: 11)
Contentment through the wait is critical; gratitude for new opportunities, challenges, tests, and ultimately growth is necessary. What is being taught in the wait? What is being refined?
A wait for a job brings opportunities to grow professional skills and catch up with friends and family.
A wait for a relationship brings opportunities for self-discovery and confidence growth.
It’s hard to see it now but waiting is rarely regretted. We may never know the terrors and trials God is helping us evade during an extended wait.
I know God hasn’t failed me yet and I’m sure He never will.
“For nothing is impossible with God.” Luke 1: 37
We all have a track record of how He’s brought us through. We have no reason to stop trusting Him; so, we should remain patient and faithful during our waiting period. Even if no evidence is provided to comfort us. Did Noah receive a drop of rain before the flood? Did Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego feel a cool breeze before entering the fiery furnace?
Stay strong in the faith, future generations are depending on it.
“They will tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, so that all men may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.” Psalm 145: 11-12
When I was setting about finding this next job, I didn’t intend for the search to become a great test of my faith. I thought I’d find something with ease early and be relaxed my last few months on the job. Boy was I wrong! It’s like God knew the only way my faith would grow would be if I was depending solely on Him. A verse I really leaned on/adopted as my mantra: “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” (Jeremiah 17: 7-8)
I would constantly tell myself this verse when I was rejected for a job or not contacted for a follow-up interview. But at the same time, I knew I couldn’t just take the first thing I was offered. I was testing my faith in this way too. I was trusting God to have a good job for me.
My criteria weren’t too extensive and really boiled down to three things: I didn’t want to work overnights again, I wanted to make more money, and I wanted to be in a larger city (closer to home was a bonus)! And you know what, I got all three! And because God is amazing, I’m also working in a city where my sister-in-law’s family lives, and also getting to work with a few former co-workers. I’m so glad I didn’t settle for earlier jobs I was offered. I was stepping out on faith and trusting God had the right next job for me.
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1)
Commentary in my Bible (Life Application Study Bible) for this verse says, “When we believe that God will fulfill his promises even though we don’t see those promises materializing yet, we demonstrate true faith.” More commentary also says, “Faith is the confidence based on past experience that God’s new and fresh surprises will surely be ours.”
Through this whole process, I was able to lean on past experiences, namely my 2008 wreck as proof of God’s promises.
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)
I encourage you to step out on faith, you won’t regret it!
Hi! I'm Marilyn!