Have you ever woken up thinking of the great things you could do for God, only to have something bad happen and your thinking change to maybe you are not so good? Have you heard testimonies of people in church and felt insignificant and overlooked?
I remember back in my previous church some of my peers were chosen to do an internship. This internship course was to equip them to be life group leaders and be an influence among their peers. I asked God, “I attend church. I read my Bible daily too. I think I can influence people as well. But why wasn’t I chosen? Am I not qualified enough?”
I felt really left out, so finally I told God that I want to be a great leader for him.
There is often a wait
More often than not, we expect God to fulfill our dreams almost instantaneously. If nothing happens, we either give up dreaming, or doubt God has plans to prosper us.
It took 12 years of waiting for my dream to come to pass. Two years ago, my Young Adults Pastor finally approached me to look after two life groups — to sow into their lives and help them find freedom in Jesus. It was a dream come true to be in a leadership position.
There had been lots of internal transformation and pruning seasons while waiting. The journey was not smooth sailing but definitely rewarding.
One of the first changes was to get comfortable interacting with girls. I grew up in an environment in which the majority of my cousins were males. I had to learn to be comfortable talking to girls who were not my very close friends about different kinds of girl issues. As I did not get much exposure into a girl’s inner heart, God sent these girls around me so I can learn.
Secondly, I needed to learn how to control my tongue. I am very blunt and do not see the reason in sugarcoating my words if I think someone needs to hear the truth. I once made a very insensitive comment and a few friends had to have a serious conversation with me about being tactful of other people’s emotions.
Proverbs chapter 18, verse 21 says, “Death and life live in the power of the tongue. Those who love it will eat of its fruits.”
With God’s grace, I grew to love hanging out with girls. I learnt how to be encouraging towards them. I knew that not everyone likes to hear uncensored truth, so I tried my best to provide suggestions and opinions without making them feel condemned.
When I led the group of girls, I experienced joy in seeing them find Christ. From girls who doubted their identities to girls who now devote their time to serve in church. I enjoyed seeing the company of girls encourage and cheer one another on during difficult times, rejoice and praise God during happy times.
Even when they faced hardships, I thanked God I could be with them. When they needed advice, I praised God for His wisdom that I could speak into their lives. I realised why I had to go through the internal transformation and pruning seasons for a few years — it was God equipping me so He could use me as a vessel to reach out to His precious daughters.
How do all these link to God fulfilling my heart’s desire? I believe when God wants to fulfil His dream for you there is a gap between where we are and where the dream will take us. We need to be equipped mentally and spiritually to take on that dream.
Sometimes we have our own plans or even roadmaps for fulfilling our dreams. But, often the next step we plan to take is not what God wants to us take. “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD.” (Isaiah chapter 55, verse 8)
God might not immediately reveal why He has brought us a certain way, we might not know what He is thinking, but one thing we can be certain of is what He says in Psalm 119, verse 105: “He is the lamp unto your feet and light onto your path.”
While I was waiting for my dream to be fulfilled, I got frustrated and upset with God for being so slow. I tried to go my own ways, thinking I knew better than God. I compared myself with others, and became insecure and afraid. I was worried that God had overlooked me again.
I thought if I manipulated my way, God would see it and shorten the process. In fact, sometimes I just wanted to give up and lead a mediocre life. But, I knew I should trust God in His way and lean not on my own understanding.
Today, I have more dreams that I like to see God fulfill. I probably will have to go through more pruning seasons and internal transformation so I can be closer to seeing them fulfilled. I might not have it altogether, but I know I have a God who knows exactly what He is doing.
God is working in us, through us, and with us. We just have to trust in His ways and believe in His sovereignty. Don’t worry, if I can have my dreams fulfilled, you’re next.
Amy Ching enjoys fellowship with people and seeing their lives changed because of Jesus. Her passion is to influence others and speak into their lives. She loves watching dramas, drinking bubble tea, especially matcha flavoured ones, and spending time with kids. If you want to know more about her, check out her instagram account @chingamy, where she posts about life, her revelations, and hopes to inspire. Amy is married and mother to a lovely newborn baby.
Amy Ching’s previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/amy-ching.html