A funny thing happened a few weeks ago. “Funny” being a relative term. On my way to South Dakota with my bestie to visit our other bestie and her precious new baby, traveling a route my car has seen one-hundred times over, 15 miles from our destination, my “reliable” Toyota Corolla stopped with no explanation. Just stopped. Dead. On the side of the interstate.
Thankfully, through a network of amazing friends and family, and a lot of provision from God, my car was towed to an auto shop and we made it to our destination unharmed a few hours later.
That evening, I talked to a mechanic who informed me that I had a major oil leak and my engine seized. When I asked him what he’d do if he were in my shoes, he told me that he’d take the car to a salvage yard and try to get a couple hundred bucks for it. He basically told me that my car was toast. I felt blindsided, as I think many people do when confronted with life’s unexpected events. A brownie (or three) may have been consumed following this conversation.
We visited my friend’s church the following morning. The message that day was about dreams: “Dream Again.” Truly living without regrets and taking the next step in faith towards the dreams and desires God has placed in our hearts. Honestly, it was a hard message for me to hear.
My mind kept swimming with the dreams and hopes and prayers in my life that haven’t been fulfilled and feel so far from my grasp.
Dreams of freeing women from sex trafficking.
Hopes of touching and encouraging others through story.
Prayers of becoming a mother.
And of course, I couldn’t stop thinking about the news I received the day before, regarding the fate of my faithful little Toyota Corolla. Our two options were to fix the car (by buying a different engine or taking apart and machining the current engine) or buying a different car. In my head, both those (incredibly expensive) options meant I couldnt go on a 5 year anniversary trip with my husband, I couldn’t contribute very much to my friend’s upcoming adoption, I couldn’t buy (much needed) new doors to keep the winter cold out of my house and I couldn’t stay home with my baby if I ever got pregnant.
Distracting as my thoughts were, at the end of the message, the pastor said something that I’ll never forget, “Sometimes taking the next step is remaining faithful right where we are.”
Amidst all the doubts and frantic worry that were flooding my mind, at that moment, a still small voice whispered to walk. That’s what I heard. “Kayla, just walk.”
So that’s what I’m doing. For the time being, Greg and I are living with one (old, unreliable, unattractive) car and I’m doing a lot of walking (knowing full well that winter is quickly approaching and I live in Minnesota). And I’m trusting that God will let me know what’s next when I’m supposed to stop walking.
If, like me, you are looking at a list of dreams that are unmet and feel so far off, I want to encourage you to take the next step of faith. If that next step means taking a leap, buying a car, opening a business, adopting a child, then do it. It’s scary, it’s freeing, it’s exciting and gosh-darn it, it sure is glamorous. But if that next step means remaining faithful right where He’s placed you, walking the path of fear, doubt and (seeming) monotony, that He’s laid out for you and not straying from that path, then do that. And know that you’re in good company. I’ll be walking next to you, one hand in yours (and the other one will probably be reaching for a brownie).
So let’s keep walking, friends, and trust God enough to leap when He asks us to. And while we walk, let’s remind each other that remaining faithful where we are may seem way less glamorous than taking a leap of faith, but it’s just as pleasing to the Lord.