It has been an interesting few weeks. Is it possible to resurrect deep passions? Of course it is. Am I adhering and practicing the very things I "preach" to others...I try to but realized as of late I was not until. Until I received a precious text from a young gal. Here is what it said:
"Just wanted to say thanks so much for letting me and "so and so" perform. It was so fun. And we really loved it. And you know how the Bible says "God knows what your heart desires" well, I really feel like He is using you to get to me about that and I think it is really special :)!" (names not included until they say it's okay.)
I saved this text, even though it came several days ago. It got me thinking about my passions and some of the gifts God has given me to enjoy, and have enjoyed for many years. Who is God using in your life to remind you that God does know those desires of your heart. He is going to show you, embrace that in you. Why? He designed you. If you are following after His heart he truly makes those things known. To this young girl with musical talent and music resources she is seeing how God is showing her how to use her gifts. What does she do, she recognizes God first in her life. I am just a tool being used by Him.
At the beginning of summer a friend asked if I would help redesign a tired looking bathroom. So tired that the wallpaper was pealed and several years later the remnants of that unfinished project still exist. This request came on the heals of that "what next Lord". Me sniveling to God that I am not really so good at anything but being a mother, which is an important job, but my days would soon be yeilding 6+ hours Mon.-Fri. with nothing to do. Oh yes, once I was a designer, published in magazines, amazing client list... but that was over five years ago and really so much has changed I am not good at that either. I know terrible thought process and truly a definition of the word sniveling. Asking God what is next and then this phone call from a dear friend.
I was scared when I went to their home. I had my black leather bound case, the one I always used when going to a clients house, but it was flat and empty. It was always filled so full I could not zip it. Filled with client orders, design plans, fabric swatches, paint samples, and somehow I was able to hook my tape measurer on the outside, and stuff in a large number calculator too. None of those things, just a worn leather case with nothing in it but a blank pad, and some brand new pens.
I asked this young musician if she would sing in a concert. She is young, and she has talent and if not ever given the opportunity to try and see how will she know if this is truly her passions. She tried. She surprised me. Her mom later said that she and her friend practiced for hours. She took this opportunity seriously, not carelessly. Wow. She asked lots of questions. Almost every day she would text a question here and there, learning what this opportunity involved. I love that about her.
Would I remember the right questions to ask when sitting face to face with my new "client" and her husband. Would I know how to be professional and is this where God would have me, in this next season. Should I even try this out again. I mean I loved it before, but before was five years ago. I am not the same person I was five years ago. The questions were asked. Twenty minutes into this meeting I felt like I had a handle on the questions to ask, the layout of a plan and I loved them both for accepting some of my bubblings.
It has been five years since I got lost in a sea of fabrics. Some people get lost in book stores, or computer stores, me it was fabrics, paint swatches, and tile and stone work. Hours spent just touching , feeling, and looking. Getting myself reacquainted with the world of design before I could really start looking for my new client. I met up with some of my old contacts. Over and over..."welcome back Elizabeth." I laughed off each comment with a simple..."well I am not sure, just helping out this one friend." Am I taking what God is providing and showing me and casting it aside. I am taking this opportunity seriously or carelessly? After my friend hired me, did I text her a thank you, or anything like that? A 15 year old showed God more gratitude and thanked me, than I did of this friend who knows my past experiences in design and trusted enough to hire this rusty gal.
This young gal asked me several weeks back how we know if God would want us to do something, something like music, which are her passions. I said to her that God gives us the desires of our hearts because he created us and he knows us. I shared with her passages of scripture, and that we must be following after Him to see these things and then God brings us to places to use those gifts over and over and He is truly blessed when He sees us using those gifts. Just your run of the mill conversations with a 15 year old. I told her that God will bring others into your life that validate these things, even when you are not asking for that validation.
It dawned on me when I got her text that the very same God was also making provision for me to use my gifts. How was I thanking Him? With my own insecurities. Way to go Elizabeth. This week I had to run some errands for this client's project. Talking with the "flooring" guy. I told him that I am like a student and have many questions with so many products changing in the the last five years. He took almost two hours with me and educated me. Final decisions were made for my client to present and as he helped me with a few things out to my car he said this "welcome back Elizabeth"
It is amazing how God has sent others to validate my passions in design. Each "welcome back Elizabeth" and then being hired and then those who have time to teach me of what is new in design. I missed it all out of my own snivelings. Thank you sweet young musician for reminding me of the very words I spoke to you.
"Genuine beginnings begin within us, even when they are brought to our attention by external opportunities." William Bridges
What external opportunities are you missing today, this week, or last week? What passions do you have that have yet to be used by the very God who designed you? Thank you to those in my life who have been used by God to validate the things you could not have know about.
1 Chronicle 28:9
“And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever."
"May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed."
"Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart."