Feb 22, 2010

Comfort Zone Wars - Article

My life has been a series of waiting: waiting to grow up, waiting to go to college, waiting to get married, waiting to have children, waiting to discover God’s plan for my life . . . Oftentimes, I have felt like Moses and the Israelites as they wandered through the Desert, waiting for God to lead them to the Promised Land. I felt a little cheated at times, since the Israelites at least knew where God was taking them, whereas I had no idea what God was doing with my life. I simply wanted to know where God was leading me – and all the steps involved in getting there.

Everyone who knows me will tell you that I hate change. I am the type of person who will always use the same stall in the same restroom just because I know exactly how the door latches and that I don’t have to jiggle the toilet handle to make it flush. I always order the same item off the menu at restaurants because I know how it will taste. I take the same route to work every day because I know exactly how many minutes I will be driving, in spite of the fact that other routes may be shorter. You will never see me bungee jumping or sky diving.

Allow me to fill you in on a little secret: God does not operate within the walls of our comfort zones. In fact, He breaks them into tiny pieces until it forces us to step outside the boundaries and discover new territory.

This concept is something with which I have always struggled. I find myself making excuses like, “I’ll wait to pursue my dreams until my life settles down a little bit” or “I’m just not sure where God wants me to minister.” I essentially put my life on hold until I reach whatever goal I am working on at the time. It seems safer to live that way. I keep telling myself that I will be able to make new friends, pursue my dreams, and live life once all of my goals are reached and God tells me where He is leading me. I found verses like Psalms 27:14 that seem to validate my theory on waiting: “Wait on the Lord; Be strong, and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.”

Recently, I was reading through Deuteronomy as the Israelites journeyed through the desert. As I read, one verse caught my attention. “Then the Lord said to me, ‘You have made your way around this hill country long enough; now turn north.’” [Deut. 2:2-3] I felt God tugging at my heart as I read, telling me that I had been waiting to use the gifts He gave me long enough, and it was time for me to get on my feet and ‘turn north.’

As I read through the passage and tried to convince God that staying in my comfort zone was safer, He responded with: “The Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He has watched over your journey through this vast desert. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you, and you have not lacked anything.” [Deut. 2:7]

It was difficult, but in the end I allowed God to lead me out of my comfort zone and discover new territory. I still don’t know exactly where God is leading me, but I do know that He will be with me all the way. I think sometimes that’s all God wants of us: trust.

(c) 2009 Erica M. Holle. All rights reserved.
For more information about this article and others, please email erica.holle@hotmail.com.


Jennifer said...

I think you said it perfectly. All God wants from us is trust. Well said.

Reese said...

This is so very true.

Natalie said...

This was very encouraging to me Erica and exactly what I needed to hear today. Thank you! I love your blog:)

Vicki said...

I am grateful God doesn't tell us all the steps ahead of time because if I knew what the path would hold, I might run in terror!

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