I’ve been thinking a lot about the future–next fall to be exact. See, I’ve been substitute teaching the past year, and while I love the variety of teaching in different classrooms and schools, I’ve been wanting my own classroom for a while now, and I feel like I’m ready.
I don’t know how teaching jobs are posted anywhere else, but here in Missouri they start to post them around the beginning of the year since teaching contracts are ending and teachers are either retiring or moving to different schools or other positions within their districts. Where I live, a lot of the schools and districts prefer to hire more experienced teachers instead of hiring teachers right out of college. The teaching jobs in my area are also very limited as well, so it makes finding a teaching job more competitive. I remember when I was doing my student teaching. I was so worried about the competitiveness of trying to find a teaching job after graduation and having some anxiety about whether or not I would be able to find something. I remember it being such a big deal for me then, but God has really been working on my heart in the year that I’ve been subbing.
I can honestly say that if I don’t find a teaching job for the fall, I would be fine with subbing again, or even being a paraprofessional for the upcoming school year because I’ve learned to lean on and trust God so much more than I did before. It wasn’t an easy lesson to learn by any means, and there are still some areas of my life that I’m actively learning to trust God every day, but I’ve learned that if things don’t go the way I think they’re supposed to, it’s not the end of the world. God already knows what He’s doing. He doesn’t need me to tell Him what to do or to question Him. Yes, there are times when I’m like, “Okay, God. I don’t know what you’re doing right now,” but trusting Him is a choice I have to make every day–and sometimes more than once every day.
For those reading this that don’t know me personally, I have always been the planner in my family. Every other member of my family can pretty much fly by the seat of their pants, and they’re okay with that. I, on the other hand, had to have back up plans for my back up plans. I remember when I graduated from high school and I pretty much had my whole life planned out. I knew where I was going to go to college, I knew what I was going to major and minor in, and I knew (or at least I thought I did anyway), where my life was going to go after I graduated from college. If you didn’t read my previous post, to recap, none of those things worked out like I had planned them. God threw me a curve ball and took me the long way around to finish my degree, and it wasn’t at the college I started out at. At the time, I was so brokenhearted about why God was taking me down that road, but what I came to realize was that it was in that brokenness that God really started to work in my heart and in my life. I couldn’t see it at the time, but looking back now, I can see exactly where God was leading me and why He took me down that crazy, long road.
Trusting God is still something that I struggle with at times, but when I’m struggling with it, I always look back at my life and then I pray and remember the scriptures I memorized about trusting God. I have always loved to write, and I’ve kept a journal since I was a teenager, and sometimes when I struggle with trusting God, I will get out some of those old journals and just read about my life–the things I was worried about, the things I hoped for, and just the things that I was doing at that time in my life. It’s not hard to see God’s hand and faithfulness in it all.
Jeremiah 17:7 says, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord whose confidence is in Him.” What I didn’t realize then that I do now is that faith and trust go hand-in-hand. You can’t have faith without trust. Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Putting my faith in God also means that I have to trust Him fully that He knows what He’s doing more than I do. He can see things I can’t see and He can protect me from things and people that I am blind to. It’s not always easy to trust Him, but it’s necessary in my walk with Him.
I don’t know if you’re reading this right now and thinking that you need to work on trusting God more, or maybe you don’t even know where to start because you’re like me and you’re a planner who has to have back up plans for her back up plans. This might sound a little cliche to some, but honestly the two things that helped me the most is by praying for God to help me to trust Him more and by getting into His Word. Whatever I’m struggling with, whether it’s trusting God more or learning to be patient, I write scriptures that talk about whatever it is that I’m struggling with and keep them in places where I look at them a lot, like the mirror that I do my hair and make up every day. I read those scriptures over and over again until I’ve memorized them, and then whenever I struggle with that particular thing, I pray those scriptures.
If you’re struggling with trusting God, I encourage you to start praying and getting into His Word, and maybe start keeping a journal so that you can look back and see how God was leading you and guiding you through those tough situations. When I go back and read my journals I’ve written, I always feel so thankful for God’s blessings and guidance in my life, and I pray that you will be able to do the same.