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  • Writer's pictureJamie DeChaine

Yes Through The Mess

Three, Zero, Seven. Three hundred and seven. It's the total number of questions Jesus asked in all four gospels combined. Almost all questions dealt with the individual(s) directly. When we read the Bible, we assume the questions from God and Jesus stopped back then, but in reality we are asked questions from them through the Holy Spirit today. Case in point, I was asked a bold question from God. Now, I know you're probably thinking, "Of course, any question from God is going to be bold, duh." You’re never really ready for the type of boldness though...

I heard God ask this question, stopping me in my tracks: "If I never came through on the promises and plan I had for you, would you still love Me?"

How do you answer a question so profound coming from the lips of God? How does your heart respond? Put another way, is God enough without you receiving anything? I stood there, silent.

You see, we place so much pressure on answering our "calling" in life. It's as if we get a high off of being called by God to accomplish x, y, and z. On the positive side, our heart yearns for Him and sharing the amazing love of Jesus to those who don't know Him. We receive our purpose. On the negative side, we put too much pressure on stepping into our calling. Often, we try to do it on our own in an attempt to speed up the process. Like a roll of film in the light, we end up coming out of the darkroom too early causing overexposure. God's timing really is key.

But, what if you did everything "right?"

What happens when you said "Yes" to God about a calling and moved towards that path?

Then, God continues to confirm it, even causing a miracle out of faith to occur on the way...

But then, when it or you failed, you realized and accepted it along with other uncontrollables blocking the way of the path before you...

Finally, you give up that path, telling God He is more important than a dream....even one He gave you.

Complexities aside, the question remains: Is your "Yes" still on the table, even if the table is different?

Recently at Heart and Soul church, friend and Pastor Austin Coleman asked the question "Is your yes on the table?" This was the question he posed after referencing Isaiah 6:8: "And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" Then I said, "Here I am! Send me.""

I had heard similar questions before from this verse, but this time was different. The pastor asked the question, God added the still. It echoed "would you still love me" but with more intentionality of placing the yes back on the table.

I picked up the "yes" when I put down the crown on the table. I was attempting to tell God, "You are more important to me than any dream or calling I believe you gave me." Unfortunately, I did not realize I removed the "yes" in the process of surrender. My hands went from an outspread position to wrapping my arms around myself, holding the areas I was hurt in the most.

In life, we do this very thing without realizing. Even if by mistake, subconsciously we turn the surrender into a transaction. Our nature can quickly turn to a give-and-get mentality. How can we see passed it and learn what the "yes" truly is?

Now, I get it. You're thinking, "This guy has talked about removing his "yes" and stuff, but what exactly is he referencing?" Well, remember when I said what if you did everything "right?" I felt that way. To quickly explain, I was approached by a couple to start a church...a church! I would also be one of three pastors on staff. Me? A church planter and pastor? God, is this it?!

My wife and I prayed, but knew in our hearts God had called us to it. We began the journey of planting the church. I had an ask of my own from God during the process: "God, I can't do this pastor role with my current job schedule. I need nights and weekends off. I trust you."

Remember the mention of a miracle above? Well, He did it! But, it wasn't without stepping out in faith on my part. I had been applying to jobs left and right, almost eighty different jobs. However, not one company reached out. I told God, "I've stepped out in faith! But, nothing."

God replied, "You've not stepped out in faith at all...quit your job."

"Uh, what?"

I presented to my wife what God had said. The idea He was telling me to quit when no one had reached out in the two months I had been applying had me worried. Ultimately, I knew what I had to do. Without skipping a beat, my wife said do it! I. Kid. You. Not. The day after I turned in a two-week notice, I was contacted by the company I am with currently. "God, thank you for confirming this path of church planter and pastor!!" The dream of being able to share Jesus to others from the passion God placed in my heart had arrived.

But then, obstacles and uncontrollables arose. Church hurt happened. Long story short, God asked me to place my crown down and leave what I thought was my calling and dreams. But, God knew. Why would He allow me to start something He knew I wouldn’t continue? Would God ever allow me to preach or be in ministry again, even after being obedient? Did I want to be?

After all of the confirmations and even miracle, how did I end up here? I had done everything “right.” I wasn’t confused, I was hurt. I wanted to throw in the towel and never do anything church related again.

This is the crossroad we all face. Do we turn and give up or keep going straight, ending at the table? Do we allow our feelings to rule or our faith to guide?

The challenge comes through when faith and failure collide.

So, here lies the table before you. You get to control what you can and let go of what you can’t. For you, if it was past church hurt, what can you control now?

I learned placing my “yes” on the table also meant placing my wounds there as well. Faith causes you to open your arms wide, exposing the hurt and allowing God to heal it.

In the end, you will realize the "yes" on the table was never your words of surrender, but rather it was your heart opened freely.

It’s time to say “yes, still.” It’s time to enter the darkroom and go through the process God has for us to come out at the end, able to stand in the light by His timing.

As for me, “Yes, God. I’ll still love you.”

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