“God will use all your decisions, changeable and unchangeable, for your ongoing growth and development. There is nothing you can do to prevent God from bringing good out of the raw materials of your choices and the resulting circumstances. God can write straight using crooked lines.”Discernment, God’s Will & Living Jesus: Christian Discernment as a Way of Life
– Larry Warner
I had forgotten about God’s endless grace, mercy, and faithfulness. It’s not a “pass/fail” deal, with God looking down and approving/disapproving. God delights in us and can use our limited capacities to work. It gives me more boldness to dream and try a few new things.
We do our best to discern how the Spirit is leading–working through scripture, discerning how God is already at work and joining Him, having community to process with, and lots of prayer. There are times when I move forward and others when I feel paralyzed. But God taking delight in us…that’s a game changer. The stress and pressure are off the shoulders. The anxiety of “am I doing the right thing” (after we’ve done the discernment work) is lessened when I remember that God specializes in taking the raw material of my life and transforms it for His good purposes (Phil. 1:16, Romans 8:28). Even if I make a “wrong decision” that didn’t pan out, God will work toward growth and development through the process.
Larry’s last line reminds of the poet J. Cole’s song, Crooked Smile. He has this line that reminds of God’s redemptive work with our crooked stories and smiles:
They tell me I should fix my grill cause I got money nowJ.Cole, Crooked Smile
I ain’t gon’ sit around and front like I ain’t thought about it
A perfect smile is more appealing but it’s funny how
My shit is crooked look at how far I done got without it
I keep my twisted grill, just to show them kids it’s real
We ain’t picture perfect but we worth the picture still
We ain’t picture perfect in our decision-making, but we worth the picture. There’s One who takes Delight in us, period.