Friday, October 1, 2010

Would you dare to believe?

I'm not really sure how to formulate all that is going through my mind this evening, but I really feel that I need to share the faithfulness of God. There is a song that Matt Maher sings- well actually 2 songs for this post - bu the first, Alive Again. In a normal context, and when this song first came out, I really felt like God used it to speak to me in a powerful way about his relentless pursuit of me. To quote the second song by Matt Maher, Your Grace is Enough- God did and continues to "wrestle with [this] sinner's restless heart." But today, in a very profound and unmistakable way, God spoke to me. And I later heard these words in this song by Matt Maher,

You called and You shouted
Broke through my deafness

Now I'm breathing in and breathing out
I'm alive again
You shattered my darkness
Washed away my blindness
Now I'm breathing in and breathing out
I'm alive again  

These words became and have become so literal for me right now. For the last few months, I have been trying desperately to figure out what God wants me to do and what I should do- as far as school, a career, etc. I have chosen "realistic" career paths, one after another, along with the appropriate school options. None of which ultimately worked for me, resulting in a recurring headache. All the while, this voice inside me kept saying, Jenna, why don't you just paint. That simple. Yet even considering this path and its lack of a steady job completely floods me with worry. I like plans, and that path is too spontaneous and unreliable. But I went with it anyway, because I felt one by one God began eliminating my other options. Yet for whatever reason, I still did not feel confident in my decision. I felt so silly and ridiculous anytime someone would ask me what I'm doing now.... "Well I'm.... painting. And I'm going to go back to school to paint. So I can graduate and.... paint."
I kept begging God to please, give me some confirmation that I was actually doing what he had asked. That I was actually doing what I am supposed to be doing. That I hadn't completely missed what he had said or overanalyzed or misunderstood.

Today I went to meet with my undergrad art professors to get some advice on applying for and pursuing my MFA. And WOW. I cannot believe the depth of confirmation that I felt in my heart from God. These people think like me, have the same motivation as me, know what it feels like to tell people that your career is art. They have the same hopes and dreams for themselves and their art. They understood me. And best of all, I feel so normal around them. Around people that I have so much in common with. Around people driven to create. Around other artists. And they have such confidence that this is what I should be doing and that I will succeed- Such a compliment coming from artists like them. And I know, now more than ever, God brought me back to Memphis at just the right time, and he placed me in just the right school to finish my undergrad. Being in this art department was such a blessing to me and my art, especially when my love for and confidence in my art had been so wounded. Being around these people is such a God-thing. And today just capped it all off. I felt and feel God's calling so strongly. It was like God was saying, "Ok, if you didn't catch what I was saying before, let me make it undeniably clear. Now go. Do this." I am just so amazed at how he answered my prayer for guidance. I have no idea how I am going to get to where I am going, but I know he will see me through and see me to the end.
Honestly, left up to me, I would never have planned such a thing for myself. I still have a really hard time even considering myself a true "artist." But this God? An MFA? Wow. Great is your faithfulness, Oh God. 

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