I used to believe that my story had to look a certain way, decorated with all the right ribbons and bows, adorned with all the right people and places, wrapped up in all the right decisions and accomplishments. I was held captive by a lie that told me I wasn’t enough; I wasn’t enough because my story didn’t look like “her” story or “their” story.
I remember very clearly an evening during my sophomore year of college when I finally allowed the Lord to break through the chains of unbelief that for so long were tangled around my heart. I was sitting in my dorm room live-streaming the IF:Gathering, a very powerful and anointed Christian conference for women. The Lord used one of the speakers that night to break right through the chaos in my heart and put belief and trust back into a place where I had shut it out for so long.
The truth spoken was this: “You can’t live out the promise if you aren’t believing the promise.”
It was in that very moment that the Lord reached down and whispered into my heart and said, “Lahni, your story is different, but it is mine and I am going to use it,”a life-changing truth that I wrote down in purple ink to look back on in the days and years that would pass.
We all have pivotal moments that will pass us by, moments where we are met at the crossroads of living stuck in unbelief or living recklessly abandoned, believing the promise that our God is faithful even when our story doesn’t look the way we think it should, believing that all of the pieces to our story are being crafted by a God who is more than capable of creating beauty even when all we have to offer Him are ashes.
The choice I made that night is a choice that is presented to us all, a choice that changes the way we live our lives. When I chose to believe the promise that night, I began to live in the promise, leaving behind false representations of who I was and who I belonged to, allowing the Lord to move and adorn my story in His goodness and glory, taking a hammer to the window through which I used to compare my story to others’.
I began to realize that God has always been in the driving seat of the vehicle I was in, and that he’s always longed to take me places and show me things that only He can; He’s never left me, but somewhere along the way I began to look out the window next to me, at the lives of those around me, instead of the window in front of me, a window that required me to be present.
When I made the life-changing decision to turn my face forward again and believe the promise, free from the distractions I used to be caught up in while looking out at the side of the road, I was surprised at the great adventure and responsibility that awaited me just beyond the window in front of me. When I began to trust the driver, He began guiding me to places I had never been before. He began to hold me responsible for the things that were in front of me, things I never would have known and seen had I chosen to continue to look out the window next to me.
When you’re fully present in the “vehicle” God has placed you in, you’ll learn to trust the driver and begin to view life through the window he has placed in front of you, not beside you. You’ll begin to take on a confidence, trusting that where the Driver is taking you is good. The roadblocks in front of you? He’ll prepare you, but you have to be willing to look forward.
This is the sweetest truth I have come to know in my 22 years; a truth that I will tuck away in my heart, a truth that will continue to guide me through each of my days.
Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart. Psalm 1:6 ESV