you are going places you have never been before

9:33 PM

Last week, I lost my precious dog. My dog, Phoebe, was suffering with a heart problem and my parents had to put her down. I have never been much of a dog person. I don't appreciate slobber, wet dog smell or the constant shedding of hair. But what I realized when she died was just how much I loved her and just how much I was going to miss her. I appreciated the positivity that she brought to my family, so positive that she was wagging her tail as she walked into the operation room to be put down. This post really has nothing to do with her, but she deserved a tribute (RIP dear p.john). As I said, this blog post is not about my dog, but it is about suffering and it is about the future.

Today I woke up at 12:30, went on a walk with my roommate, got ice cream, and went house hunting. It was glorious to watch the leaves change and to be surrounded by people who make me happy. There is absolutely nothing better to clear your mind. And with a clear mind, I decided to listen to a podcast, but not just from anyone. Last year, my dear friend Elisabeth lost her uncle to cancer. His name was Rick Campbell. He spoke at chapel on February 26th of 2009, and almost 2 years later, despite his absence, his sermon was incredibly prevalent and exactly what I needed to hear.

The thing that I still can not comprehend is God's plan for taking important things away from us. If I could answer that, I wouldn't have been the girl crying over her dog for 3 hours last Saturday. But I know this, His work CONTINUES and He is still working through Rick Campbell.

Some things were just too important for me not to share. So here are the key points:
1. When Israel was entering the promised land and crossing over the Jordan, the Jordan was at a level of extreme flooding. Basically, crossing the Jordan at that time was not ideal, most instances in our life are not going to be ideal but those events are what lead us to our promised land.
2. Preparation+Opportunity=Success. God does not give us opportunities that we are not prepared for.
3. Once Israel crossed the Jordan there were still battles but God told them over and over again "Do not fear". Once we reach the place that God has lead us, we will still face the battles, they are inevitable and part of our walk with God.
4. You have purpose, and you are going places you have never been before.

If you go here, you can hear it all. It's worth the 30 or so minutes:

The thing I struggle with as of late is fitting my future into a little box that I can carry around with me, almost like a security blanket. I usually look for things that are ideal and mistake them as God's plan. It seems to me that if all the pieces fit perfectly then obviously that is what I should do. But I am realizing that playing it safe is not God's plan for me. I am in a time of extreme testing and what the test has proven to me thus far is that my future will require sacrifice. It will require me to cross Jordan amidst the flood. It will require more of me than I believe I have in me right now. It will not be ideal and it will be full of battles but God is going to take me places that I have never been before. and I absolutely can not wait.

p.s. recently my parents got a new little puppy. i believe it's part bear and it possibly might have narcolepsy, but i love the little thing anyway (as long as it doesn't smell and slobber all over me). As my momma always says, God has turned our mourning into dancing. Welcome to the fam little eloise.

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