Sundays With Rae

a blog for women by a woman who is trying to get her life together while still loving Jesus

Good is Coming

My dad dying was like God taking my favorite vase and dropping it on purpose and the shock of it all left me speechless. But I let my silence speak volumes, because I had nothing to say to God. As far as I was concerned, He’d made a mess and left me with the broken pieces. I know the Bible says all things work together for the good of them that love the Lord but maybe I didn’t love the Lord because surely no good could come from this.

Those were (sometimes still are) dark days. I’m grateful I’ve grown to a place where those days are few and far between, but when those bad days come, sometimes it’s really bad, making the good seem nonexistent. And it’s a pity, because there’s so much good. So much, that even if I tried to hide from it, the good would find a way to me. And maybe this seems impossible to believe right now. Maybe you don’t have dark days, but you have dark weeks and it’s been months since you said the word good and meant it. Misery may love company, but you’re doing just fine all by yourself. I know that feeling.

Grief is difficult. It just is. There are no shortcuts. You are where you are. Other people may not understand it and they don’t have to. You don’t have to see it right now, you don’t have to feel it, and I’m somewhat tempted to say you don’t even have to believe it (although, it helps if you do), but know that one day you will be able to genuinely smile again. You won’t measure time by loss. God will be friend to you instead of betrayer. He won’t just be seen as taker, but giver. One day, your bad days will be few and far between because good is coming to find you.  

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Enjoying the good (November 2020)

Pause in the Plan

Guess who doesn’t have to go to work until further notice? Me, I don’t. Of course I’m beaming with excitement! I thought I would get a day or two but it’s going to be at least a week, probably two. As a single person with no kids who will still be getting paid, this is honestly like an early Spring Break for me. We’ll probably have to make up some of the time, but I’ll deal with that then. In the midst of my joy, I realize what I’m considering a vacation, for many it’s a disruption in their life they didn’t see coming and they don’t know how they’ll recover.

Their kids are out of school, but they have to go to work. They don’t have to go to work but they’re also not getting paid. One of their family members is sick and they have to take care of them. Appointments they’ve had for months have been canceled because offices are closed. Events they have been looking forward to are no longer happening. Trial dates have been postponed. They have no idea what their tomorrow will be. It’s like everything has been put on pause.

We’ve all experienced a pause in our lives, maybe not to this degree, but in some way or another, things don’t end up going the way we think they will when we think they will. We wait. And we hope. And we pray. This is the trying of our faith. Can we really trust God? Will He really see us through? Did we hear Him right? Yes, yes, and yes! This pause doesn’t mean the plan won’t come to fruition and it doesn’t mean it won’t be difficult but know that God is working it out. There is a grand scheme of things we are not privy to. It’s easy for me to say all these things while sitting in the position I’m in but trust me when I say there have been so many moments when I didn’t believe, and I desperately wanted to. God is faithful, He always has been and always will be. Lean into Him through this pause and know that you’re coming out on the other side.

Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

February 2020

To read more about waiting, click here and here and here

Stay There

As a special education teacher, many of my students have a clinical diagnosis of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which basically means they can’t sit still for very long and have difficulty focusing on one task. I know experts say “they’re” over-diagnosing kids and putting them on medicine unnecessarily, but I am a witness that there are some children who do in fact have this condition. No matter how many times I say, stay, they go. No matter how many times they ask me the directions and I repeat myself, they still do the opposite. As adults, many of us display these same symptoms when God tells us to stay in a particular situation.

Stay at that job. Stay at that school. Stay in that class. Stay in that church. Stay in that marriage. Stay there. No matter how many distractions come your way, stay where God placed you. I repeat, stay where GOD placed you. We’re always ready to chase a dream, chase a purpose, chase a career, chase a man, we just chase whatever, but sometimes God is telling us to run in place. He’s preparing us for where we’re going. If you’re like me, sometimes you seek God for guidance, AFTER you’ve made up in your mind what you’re going to do. This is nothing new for God. The remnant of Judah had already decided to go to Egypt where they thought it was safe, consulted God on the back end, only for Him to tell them to stay put (Jeremiah 42). Just like us sometimes, they didn’t listen and destruction met them in Egypt just like God said it would.

We think better is somewhere else, when instead it’s right where we are. I believe God has big plans for my life and He is taking me places and I also believe He has plans for where I am right now. Don’t take for granted what God has already given you because your eyes are fixed somewhere else. My students notice every sound and movement outside of themselves. They often have a hard time simply being who they are, where they are, missing out on important details and moments. These same students with medicine, in some cases, a lot of redirection, and a lot of opportunities to get it right, find a way to be where they belong. Trust God with where He has you, and stay there, come what may. It may not be comfortable, it may be contradictory to YOUR plan, it may take too long in your opinion, but we can never go wrong being obedient to what God is telling us to do. So if He’s telling you to stay there, stay there.

Jeremiah 42:10 If ye will still abide in this land, then will I build you, and not pull you down, and I will plant you, and not pluck you up: for I repent me of the evil that I have done unto you.

July 2019

Wait There

My church is currently going through the book of Acts. We covered chapter 1 this past week and I got stuck on verse 4, which reads, “And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.” The promise was the Holy Ghost but the disciples had to be at the right place in order to receive Him.

What has God promised you? Where did He tell you to wait? So many of us know what God has promised us but instead of waiting where He told us to, we go here, there, and everywhere. And we have every excuse to justify why we’re not where we should be. “It was too hot.” “None of my friends were there.” “Too many other people were there.” Some of you have business ideas that God already told you will flourish, but you don’t want to start in a particular market. Some of us, I mean you, desire to be married, but we won’t sit still long enough to be found/find. Some of you want certain promotions on your jobs or even in your churches, but every time someone says something you don’t like, you leave. God is telling someone to wait, there.

As the first chapter of Acts continues, not only did the disciples wait in Jerusalem, but while there, they took care of business. They prayed; they selected someone to replace Judas. They didn’t wait for the sake of waiting, they worked while they waited. Wherever God is calling you to wait, do something while you’re there. Be a blessing to the coworkers you’ll one day supervise. Do quality work for the three clients you have, instead of waiting until you have fifty clients. Take care of yourself, before asking God to send you someone else to take care of.

Everybody wants to hear God say move, but what if He’s telling you to stay. Your promise may be there, if you’re obedient and choose to wait there.

April 2019

Pregnant Pause

About four years ago I found myself unsure of where my life was headed. I was unhappy with my job, unhappy with my love life, struggling with grief, and just really unhappy. I didn’t know what else to do but seek God. My seeking God was out of pure desperation. Not much faith was involved, mostly complaining about the unknown. Eventually God gave me direction and I was happy again but my trust in God was so shaky. Some days I knew He was working for me, other days I questioned it. Some days His timing felt perfect, other days He was moving too slow. But because He is faithful, He fulfilled His promise to me.

Today I find myself in that similar place I was four years ago: unsure. But this time I’m not unhappy. I’m not desperate. I’m not faithless. I was telling my friend about it and her response was, “oh so you’re at a pregnant pause.” That was the perfect term. A pregnant pause. If I look at my life day to day it appears as though nothing is happening, but when I look back at the months and maybe even the years, I’ll see the growth. Something significant is on the way and I have no idea where it will take me, but I’ll trust God will get me there.

I don’t hate my job, I just think it may be time for a change. Maybe a different area or age group or career altogether. I’m open to a relationship, but not desperate for one. I miss my father incredibly, but I can think of fond memories and smile. I set out this year wanting to pursue spoken word seriously but I’m okay if my stage is my living room. This space and this moment seems so contrary to what I believe is my natural self (always pursing something, figuring out my next move, etc.) but I just trust God. My last experience showed me that God always shows up for me. Always. My worrying doesn’t make Him move any faster. It doesn’t make waiting more comfortable. It only lets doubt sit where faith should stand.

This pregnant pause is necessary, and I’ll enjoy all the good things while I wait for more good things.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

February 2019

Don’t Wait For Me

July 2018

“Wow!”

“That’s honorable.”

“There aren’t too many girls like you left.”

These are the responses I get when I tell people I’m waiting for marriage to have sex. They are amazed at such a declaration. As I was having this conversation with a new friend and we discussed relationships, I started to wonder was this the point guys I “talked” to realize we weren’t going to work. After all, no one has ever told me, “I’ll wait for you.” I’m grateful they didn’t because it would have been a lie and in all honesty, I don’t want anyone to wait for me.

Wait for me to get my food before you start eating. Wait for me to finish getting ready before you leave. Wait for me to wake up before you call me. But don’t wait for me to have sex.

I’m not waiting for marriage to have sex because I want to be seen as an “angel” and it actually saddens me that we equate not having sex before marriage with being a non-human. I’m waiting for marriage because God said so. It’s that simple for me. Are there other areas I struggle with and have to ask God for forgiveness? Yes. But I’m always striving to do what God says. We all fall short, but what are you striving for?

I’m striving to be holy and desire to be with someone who is also striving to be holy. Not striving to make me happy. Not striving to marry me. Someone who is striving to be holy. I always tell people I’m a lot to deal with. All day, every day. It’s going to take you striving to be holy, to be with me. Not because I’m unworthy of love. Not because I’m any more to handle than anyone else. Not even because I’m waiting until marriage to have sex. I’m a human striving to be holy, so every day I’m not wrestling against flesh and blood but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12). I don’t want to wrestle alone.

I don’t want to carry the spiritual weight of my relationship, all the time. There will be times I am spiritually weak, and will need someone to hold my arms up and pour into my life. If you’re walking around on empty talking about you’re waiting for me, you’ll have nothing to give. This is why the bible tells us to be equally yoked (2 Corinthians 6:14). I admit there was a time when I behaved as though I didn’t know what this scripture meant or I made it mean what I wanted it to. But by and by, after while, I realized there was no getting around it if I desired a Godly marriage.

There is the scripture in the bible that says the saved spouse covers the unsaved spouse (1 Corinthians 7:14) and you’ve heard love stories of how the saved man brought the sinner woman to Christ and they lived happily ever after. During that phase of my life when I was trying to skirt around 2 Corinthians 6:14, I settled on this being my destiny. I would meet a really nice guy who just needed Jesus and I would lead him to Christ and we would live an amazing life with a great testimony. I had no idea the trials and growing pains those couples go through. And, yes, every couple has their ups and downs, but did I really want to set myself up for such a relationship when I didn’t have to? No. A resounding no.

We’re called to draw all men to Christ (Matthew 28:19) but I would never want someone to come to Christ for me. I’ll be the light, I’ll be the salt of the earth, I’ll help them take that first step, but if we don’t work out, I would pray they are still moving towards Christ. This can only happen if you come to Christ for yourself. You’re not doing me a favor by waiting for me. If you don’t understand the purpose in the waiting (to be holy – set apart), your waiting is in vain. Wait for Jesus, don’t wait for me.

John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

Too Good to be True?

Recently, I was having a conversation with a friend about successful women who were still single, when all of a sudden, my friend said, “yeah, like you.” And although I had this discussion with other friends and we came to the same conclusion, on that particular day, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I am that successful woman who is still single and I’m not alone in this; many other women are in the same boat.

A few months ago I went out on a date and one of the questions my date asked was, “why are you still single?” I believe I said something to the effect of, “I don’t make time for relationships” or “it hasn’t been a major priority for me” and blah blah blah. Although, some of that was true, it wasn’t the whole truth.

Even when I had given my best effort (I’m talking prayed and everything), put in the time, made space for a relationship in my life, guess who still remained single? *raises hand* And when I asked why nothing was going anywhere, I was met with, “you have so much going on for yourself and I don’t want to mess that up” or “I’m still trying to get myself together” or “give me a few years.” A few years? Boy, bye! The moral of the story ended up being, “you’re too good for me,” and it is a fact. I am too good and any other woman who may be in this position, you’re too good too.

You’re too good to have to convince someone you’re worth their time of day. You’re too good to have to dumb down your intelligence to make them feel comfortable. You’re too good to have to sin against God to make a relationship work. You’re too good not to be with someone who is fully committed to you. You’re too good to be put on the back burner. You’re too good to have your time wasted. You’re much too good for any of those things, so let’s all agree that in 2017, when we see the signs where this road is headed (a dead end), we’re running the other direction.

God has set us apart (Deu. 14:2; 1 Peter 2:9) so not just any man will do. You keep doing you and be reminded that the last shall be first (Lk. 13:30; Deu. 28:13). We may feel like we’re being looked over, but in actuality we’re being set up (Rom. 8:28). As much as I included God in my love life last year, I need to include Him more and completely trust the love story He is writing for me. And I know I’ve said almost every cliché thing people say when they’re talking to Christian singles but let me add in: this waiting game sucks! But I know it’s worth it. I’ll be “too good” because eventually someone is going to come along and my too good, won’t just be good enough, but it will be more than enough.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

 

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And I expect nothing less than a King (December 2016)

 

Click here, to check out my post about good men existing.