I have often talked of the past year or two of my life as being my 'Jonah' experience. I stamped my foot and raged at God, spent quite some time in the fish's stomach, and was finally washed up on a new and beautiful shore.
The island certainly had it's dangers (don't they all) but I have felt an ongoing peace that I was, at last, on God's path. To that end, I have launched myself into growing in my Christian life, catching up on 15 years of average-ness in Him. Surrounded by others who could support me and I could support, I have seen myself grow and flourish in the past few months. By concentrating on how I could best serve God, I have met some amazing people, been instrument in some minor miracles, and felt God's presence like never before.
It has been an amazing experience for me and there have been many lessons along the way, some uncomfortable, but not many as challenging as the one I face now. By nature a trusting person (perhaps too much so), I tend to rule with emotion and probably would consider myself more of a giver than a taker, sometimes to my own detriment.
I have this week been confronted with something I never, ever thought I would. And it has completely knocked me for six. Wise counsel has got me no closer to understanding why I am in the situation I am now in, and I can only conclude that this is a 'human' experience that I have been subjected to and not a Godly one. It is hard to understand why God has allowed me to be ripped from the sense of peace and security I thought I was enveloped in. I had with earnest heart asked Him to protect me from this very thing, and truly believed that He was doing so.
Because many people are affected by this experience, not just me, and that is the hardest part to bear. Re-reading through an article by Blaine Smith (nehemiah.gospelcom.net/perfect2.htm) I have to conclude - just because I think something might be perfect for me doesn't mean that God does - I have no control over the behaviours of others - sometimes crappy stuff just happens and it's what we do as a result of that, that counts. But that doesn't mean it doesn't hurt, and and it is hard not to take personal rejection, personally!
I have spent much of the past 4 days crying out to Him, and asking for His peace. There have been moments when I have truly felt this surround me, and others when it seems I may never find it.