When the Lord says "No"
Updated: Jan 12
I would like to give a testimony about a time that I wish I could take back. A time where the Lord tested me, and I failed miserably. My purpose in sharing this testimony is first, with the hope that the Lord gets glory from it. Secondly, as it was such a defining moment for me in the deputation process, I hope it can help someone else. The Lord truly is an amazing Father, and this was one of those moments where His grace and mercy were evident.
So far, the hardest time of deputation has been part-time deputation. We were still living our everyday lives of work and housekeeping while simultaneously taking our home apart piece by piece and traveling on the weekends for meetings. Some of our biggest challenges “on the road” were during this time. It seemed as though I was affected in every way: Minor health problems, spiritual health, and marriage health. All of it hit, one right after the other, and we were conscious that this was a spiritual attack. The area where I felt the weakest was my emotions. Everything made me cry and feel self-pity.
It all came to a head when the Lord said “No” to something I so desperately wanted. That is the moment when, in my heart, I had to decide that the Lord was worth following no matter what. You see, up until that point, almost everything I wanted out of life had aligned with God’s will. Now, my will crossed His and I had to trust Him. For most of the people who know me, you may think I’m referring to when my dad passed away. Unfortunately, my emotional state was far shallower than that. When my dad passed away, that’s when I was faced with being a Christian, no matter what. No, now I was faced with following the Lord no matter what. It was over something as silly as an RV.
When we started preparations for deputation in June of 2017, Justin and I discussed having a motor home/trailer or traveling out of our vehicle. We both agreed the best option for our small family was to keep our vehicle and stay in prophet’s chambers or hotels. When the beginning of 2018 came around, we came across some missionaries who told us about their experience with a mobile home. We realized that is was more feasible than we thought. We began to pray and do some research.
A couple of months went by and, the Lord didn’t give us any answers. We searched even more; pricing, RVs versus pull behinds, diesel versus gas, everything! We still hadn’t gotten any answers. Two months into it, I really began to have my heart set on it. I thought that this HAD to be God’s will. My husband and I really wanted an answer on the subject. We fasted and prayed and still had no direction. We sought Godly counsel and it confirmed our own thoughts: Proceed with caution. So, we began to look into possible loans and go to RV dealers. After almost another month, we were sure we found “the one” and that the Lord must have provided it.
It was a Friday and our plans were for me to pick my husband up after work, go to the dealer and put a deposit on it, then go to the bank the next day to get a loan. I had a baby sitter for my daughter, and I got to his job early. I had the checkbook in hand waiting for him to come out. When I saw him, I ran to him and said something like, “Come on, let’s go get our RV!” He wasn’t smiling though. He said very softly, “I have something to tell you.” I knew what that meant before he said anything else. In my heart, I told myself that it was okay, and the Lord is good no matter what. But when he showed me the verse the Lord had shewed him on his lunch break, I got so angry.
“…for this hast thou chosen rather than affliction.” Job 36:21b
The main argument we had for wanting an RV was that it would make things so much easier, especially since our daughter was going through a difficult stage. There was no denying that this verse was the answer we had been looking for. But oh, the questions I had!
Why hadn’t God showed us this when we first asked?
Why had He taken 2 months to show us and let us get our hopes up?
Why had He allowed us to have the conversation with others that made us think it was possible?
Why did He give our child such an ill temperament if we couldn’t raise her in privacy?
Then I really turned into a victim:
Hasn’t God put me through enough?
Boy, did I list every single thing I could to come up with as a reason why I deserved that RV.
I am such a child. I got so angry with the Lord that I went into a state of depression. The next morning, I woke up not wanting to get out of bed and refusing to be happy. I told the Lord that I didn’t feel like reading my Bible and I wasn’t going to. I told Him that if He wanted me to have a better attitude about it then He would have to change my heart because I was angry and content to be so.
I knew if the Lord was going to change my heart then I would have to let Him speak to me in some way. I prayed and told the Lord that I would listen to a sermon by Bro. Peacock. I asked if He would use that to speak to me. I can’t even remember what the sermon was about, but I remember Bro. Peacock going on a rant about whiny Christians. I knew the Lord was speaking to me. I can’t explain it, but somehow my heart completely changed on the matter. I went from being angry and depressed to happy and excited. I began to think of different ways to organize and pack the car and I enjoyed every minute of it.
The Lord did something really special for me; He truly changed the desires of my heart. As selfish and childish as I acted, the Lord still showed me grace and mercy. I’m so thankful for such a loving father! This entire experience the Lord used to teach me about his loving kindness. During this event in my life I learned that if ever my will crosses the Lord's if I pray sincerely and ask he will change my heart and attitude to align with his. That's such a blessing to me as I tend to have attitude issues.