This past Friday, I happened to come across one of my writing reflections from October 2018, just 2 months after starting my new job. In it, I noted divine inspiration I received from God regarding the place I was in at the time. To my amazement, now just three months later, I could already see what God was telling me then, coming to fruition now! I began to cry because I remember writing it from a place of struggle, discomfort, and even lack of confidence. The one thing I did know during that time was that I believed God and although I may have doubted ME, I never doubted HIM!! So to flashback, I wrote:
These past several weeks have been nothing short of blessings, favor, new beginnings, and I can’t forget, STRETCHING! I just started a new job on August 27th, 2018 and it involves helping first time moms with parenting and ultimately, the mission of the agency is to prevent child abuse. I’m blessed with this new job because I know it aligns with my calling from God. I’m favored to be the one chosen to complete the team, and I’m walking in the new because many aspects of this job is unfamiliar to me. I’m feeling stretched because, to be very transparent, I’m uncomfortable.
As I was praying and having a moment with God, I heard HIM say, “Evelyn, you are being stretched! You’re being stretched beyond what you think is even possible.” I felt that in my spirit. I hunched over, grabbed my belly and cried and told HIM, “I feel YOU ARE stretching me GOD. I feel the pull, the tug, the discomfort! I want to quit. It’s hard God. It’s a lot! I don’t know if I can do it! It was easier where I was. Maybe I made a mistake! I need YOU God, I need YOU!!” I cried and I heard again, “I am STRETCHING you daughter!” I feel as if HE’s assuring me that I will look back and know that HE allowed the stretching for where HE’s taking me, even though I can’t picture it right now! I sense that if I would have known specific aspects of the job prior to accepting the position, I wouldn’t have taken the steps of faith towards it. Now that I’m here, when I overcome it, I will know that I not only survived it, but excelled at it because of HIM!
Immediately after my intimate moment with God, I began to look up the definition of the word STRETCH, being that HE kept placing it in my spirit over and over again during that time with HIM. According to the Oxford Dictionary, the definition of stretching is, “To be capable of being made longer and wider without tearing or breaking.” MY GOD!! The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines stretching as, “To amplify or enlarge beyond natural or proper limits.” I’m blown away to say the least! So God’s telling me that I am growing in length and width, but I will NOT break! He’s telling me that HE’s enlarging me in different areas beyond proper limits or the natural! Wow, so if it’s beyond proper limits and beyond the natural, then what God is doing in my stretching is SUPERNATURAL! It confirms that I may be strained, learning new things, and even in a place outside my comfort zone, but I will overcome it all and when I do, I will know that it was not by my strength, but HIS that I was able to see it through and ultimately, be great! Glory to GOD!
Supernatural: Of or relating to an order of existence beyond the visible observable universe especially : of or relating to God. (Merriam-Webster)
During this time, I’ve had to leave my place of complacency and enter into the unknown. I’ve gone from knowing the ins and outs of where I was, to a new position where I have to learn everything from scratch. God reassured me that HE knows I have been uncomfortable, that I acknowledged it in the beginning as a blessing but am now going through a tough transition. He understands that I feel it would have been easier if it was how it use to be or where I was, but I am being STRETCHED, and when HE is done with me, I won’t look or feel like I once did. I will be stronger, wiser, smarter, and ready for the NEXT level…
Fast forward to today, and as I reflected on this writing from just 3 months ago, I already see what GOD has done in and through me in this new place! I’ve learned all 3 new software programs and gained knowledge of specific parts of the programs that I have been able to share with more seasoned co-workers. My supervisor jokingly called me a Guru of one of the software programs a week ago at our team meeting, and I heard God say, “SEE!” My God! I’ve received notes and thanks from families letting me know the difference I have made since I began working with them. I have been welcomed by co-workers and they have been very verbal about my strengths and my passion. My supervisor sees my worth, encourages me often, points out my strengths, and leads by example always. Most of all, I feel the growth! I am no longer lacking confidence, no longer feeling out of place, or struggling! I know who I am, a child of the MOST HIGH God, and I know why HE sent me here, to pour into the lives of mothers, children, and families! I know that this was no coincidence or mistake. HE knew what I carried, even when I doubted myself! He knew I could and would overcome one of the biggest challenges in my life and because of it, I now am looking even further, for if God got me through this, there’s nothing I can’t do with HIM on my side!
Today, God wants someone to know that you, too, are being stretched!! Stretched beyond what you thought was possible, stretched beyond the natural, stretched wider and longer WITHOUT being broken! So STRETCH man or woman of GOD, STRETCH! Be still and KNOW that HE is GOD! Pray, believe that with God nothing is impossible, and then go out and do! Stretch HE says, STRETCH!
We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed… All of this is for your benefit…That is why we never give up… For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.-2 Corinthians 4:8-18