For one, keeping my sanity in check is based on relationships; community. These guys really came to my rescue. Any other time, I would have really been concerned because of finance (can I afford this), scarcity (will I be able to make it to, and keep, my job!), and throwing off my schedule (I feel loss because I can't work out and stick to my regiment; sense of identity.)
With relationships, there is a confidence that, even if the worst happened and one lost their job, the community would help that person return to work (dignity, and being a contributing member of that community would return.)
The same is true in investments. Watching my mentor invest with his partners has taught me that it all boils down to “who” you are dealing with. Do these people have integrity? Whether or not you understand the investment, are they people of character? Can they win with integrity? Can they fail with integrity?
That brings me to an even more basic spiritual principle. Faith, religion, purpose, meaning; anything a 'spiritual' person is seeking is accomplished through relationship, relationship with Him.
Meaning, when I was always praying and focusing on God for hours every day, I never had a worry or concern about my provision. I never felt scarcity. I always had the right deals come my way.
These were never concerns for me when I have pressed into the presence of God, seeking intimacy, RELATIONSHIP, with Him.
So, relationship is where I return. I have had a huge personal revelation of the desperate need I have for Him. The desperate need I have for God. So, I return to Him. I have not been avoiding Him; I have only been too busy pursuing life that I have missed Life.
I used to say that I could go longer without food and water than the presence of God. It used to be an inflamatory statement, exaggerated to perk people's perception.
Now, I say it with all sincerity, and I will elaborate.
I can go longer without food, water, ego needs being met, females, work, purpose, or working on projects than without the Presence of God, than I can without Relationship, Intimacy, with Him and His people.
None of those other things makes sense any more outside of His context for me. You see, I have gone long enough pursuing God that He has taken me to strange, new places. Like the shepherd boy in The Alchemist, I have been brought to a new place where I know nothing but Him. Right now, all of my relationships were divinely ordained. Right now, my work was divinely ordained.
Being divinely ordained, they do not really make sense to me on where they came from, where they are going, and the purposes behind them. At least, they do not make sense outside of the context of a Living Relationship with Him.
But, knowing that He brought me here to Lakeland, knowing that He had me run into Chad at Panera two years ago, knowing that He gave me that prosperous job and took it away, KNOWING THAT HE LED ME HERE, I can stay bold, confident and sane in each moment. I face all of these things and can honestly say, 'God, you MUST take care of this. I am fully incapable.'
The same is true for me with so many other social expectations of people my age. My career, my education, my financial status; all have been led by God for almost 7 years. Were I to reject God, my context would shift to what the world expects of me, and I would be most pathetic! Fear, scarcity (women won't want me, jobs won't want me) and lack would creep in. What a cold, grey, damp world!
However, reaffirming myself that following God prayerfully has led me here, bumps and bruises and all, the whole of it is different. Inside of the God context after these last years, I look at what He expects of me. I disregard what women would think, what jobs would think, what anybody would think. I look to what He has promised.
Simply put, I am too far along that I cannot turn back (meaning I cannot start measuring myself by any standard other than His context, a relationship with Him). That would be certain mental and physical suicide. To measure myself by the world standards would ensure my doom. To measure myself by God's standards would place me on a pedestal so high as to not be able to even identify what the world thinks when they look.
And that brings boldness. That brings confidence. That brings certainty and peace to my spirit.
My entire life is engineered for success in the Lord! It must be, for, I am fully confident that were the Spirit of God to be removed from me, I would drop dead instantly. This far along, He is my sustaining force, He is my context, and in any other context I would be nothing.
In His context, I am everything.