It was day two of a writers’ conference. I’d flown across the country for it, but I couldn’t stop crying.
The last two years had been difficult. I’d looked forward to this conference as one looks forward to a family reunion. I’d planned and budgeted, but as time drew closer I realized there were too many bills. So I paid them, sent out an online prayer request, and went to bed.
When I awoke, my inbox was overflowing with good news. A friend offered her frequent flyer miles. Another took care of the ground transportation. An anonymous benefactor covered my room and food. And I’d received a scholarship for the conference.
My thankful spirit was mixed with a sense of duty to make the most of the conference. If God orchestrated so many people to come alongside and get me there, there must be a reason. I was striving to find Him in every word, face, and class. My focus had shifted to being overwhelmed at being overwhelmed.
“If nothing else ...” The words haunted me. I’d said them to many people, but they weren’t true. I didn’t want the only reason God sent me to the conference to be so others could see His glory. I wanted more. I wanted for myself. I wanted to learn, network, laugh, grow, and surround myself with new people. I wanted to create new stories … to forget my recent hurts and be happy. But I couldn’t.
Surrounded by those I call family, I couldn’t shed my darkness. I was supposed to be strong, courageous, and secure like children of God should be. But God’s children cry. And it’s messy, awkward, and embarrassing. Here I was, crying without control. The only thing my writing family could do was comfort me with their presence and prayers.
As I began to let go, the hurts and anxiety flew out, making room for nothing else … but God. My expectations for the conference were exceeded when I realized God was answering my prayers. I was learning and growing—not just as a writer, but as His child.
In the midst of your hurts and anxiety, rest in God’s arms of abundant grace. And that is everything.
(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)
(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)