Monday afternoon I ran into my friend Michelle at lunch. She was on the church retreat mentioned in my last post, and she wanted to hear about my experiences that weekend. Conversation eventually veered to the topic of relationships; both of us had learned lessons in the past from wandering from God's will in that area, and now she is in a relationship with my friend Sam. Both of them are serious Jesus Freaks with huge hearts for God. She began to talk about how God is using their relationship in awesome ways, moving through it in the Spirit, affirming them and growing them.
I, being a very emotionally-based person, have always been in love with the idea of being in love. A few months ago I saw how I let that control me in some ways. While wanting to be in love with an awesome Godly woman is not a bad thing, it can distract from God's plan if I keep focusing on it. I even had a running "short list" of girls I knew who were serious about their faith and whom I connected with personality-wise. Basically, I was trying to do God's planning for Him.
As I heard my friend Michelle talk about how great God was being in her and Sam's relationship and how they were glorifying Him in it, God spoke to my heart. He said, "See, Zach, when you let me take over this part of your life I can do some awesome things. Give this up to me, Zach... let your will and heart conform to mine." As I heard the testimony of my two friends' relationship, God laid a peace upon my heart. I started to give those wants up to Him.
It wasn't an instant inner transformation, like at the retreat; I'm taking steps towards giving it completely up in my heart, that I might want God's plan over my plan. Sure, God's plan may include a woman, but I'm going to want it because it's God's plan, in His timing. Not my timing. That way I will be perfectly content in God's plan even when there is no woman present. I started off by reporting the "aching-romance" thoughts to my internal thought police: they were to be captured on sight and tossed out (a metaphor for taking thoughts captive for God). Wednesday, I gave it up to God again in the mid-week worship service on campus. My good friend Lucas prayed over me as I gave it up again, really affirming and encouraging me.