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BEING IN A GOD-ORDAINED PLACE BY ZANELE BALOYI


One of the questions which, I think, the majority of us ask ourselves is: “Am I where God has destined me to be?'' That question alone can bring many fears, doubts, anxieties and questions, and make us feel so disoriented. Oftentimes, we want to answer this question by ourselves, using our own intellects, experiences and knowledge and, often, the last resort is to ask God. I feel as though that is one of the things I have done so many times in my journey, as I’ve attempted to live in the destiny that God has for me.

Destiny, for me, simply means that there is a uniquely curated plan, life, and purpose that God has intentionally crafted and planned out for me to live in, but I can never get to that place without Him – though so often, we think we can.


Growing up, I was so good at Maths and Physics, I automatically assumed that was the path for my life. As I then set out to study Geological Sciences at university, although good, there was a lack of contentment. Towards the final year of my studies, I could not see beyond where I was at; I could not envision a future as a geologist, and that is when I knew I was having a crisis with my dreams. All of a sudden, funding stopped and I was unable to complete the year – it felt like I no longer knew who I was. I struggled with who I was outside of academics, and I was lost beyond measure. That was the very same year I felt beckoned to know God and I eventually gave my life to Jesus.


There were so many parts of the journey that needed the healing touch of Jesus and I didn’t know it until I was on that path with Him.

After two years of not being at school and getting to know who Jesus is, I felt Him put back the desire for me to go to school and, initially, I thought it was my time to finish my degree in geology. Little did I know, God was about to change my whole life around. I was at church one Sunday, and at the end of the service, I knew exactly what I needed to go and study, and that was Social Work. It was so different to what I had started, it felt like following the Social Work route was going to make me lose far more than I anticipated – so I hesitated. My family couldn't understand, my friends thought I was crazy and, at some point, I questioned whether I truly heard from God. To get to a place where you doubt what you have heard from God is so challenging and detrimental to one's faith. This was an anchoring verse for me during that time:

Proverbs 19:21 (NIV):

“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”


What I particularly enjoy about this verse is that it doesn't condemn or rebuke the person for having plans. In fact, it acknowledges that the human thing that a person will do is to have plans, but then here’s where faith kicks in: the verse tells us that, despite our many plans and our ability to dream, it is God’s plan that prevails. It is God’s dreams that are big, magnificent and glorious for us that prevail, and we just need to surrender, trusting Him as a good Shepherd. And so, I did. I took that courageous step and I trusted Jesus with where my life should be heading. I graduated as a social worker, the first graduate of my siblings – what a life changing moment!

I feel as though I am living out what I was created to do: there’s this undeniable sense of knowing that the Holy Spirit gives a person and, for the first time, despite the many detours, I can say I am living in my destiny.


It may not be glamorous and when compared to my first choice, it feels as though I settled for something less. I realised that part of the faith journey is allowing God to define for me what success is and what success looks like, or else I will constantly feel like a failure based on the world’s standards. Yet, I am reminded of the words that encourage us that God is working everything out for our good, as long as we are called according to His purpose, according to His destiny.

Roman 8:28 (NASB):

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”


Take heart: the God who works all things out for your good is the very same God who is working out your destiny. He never fails us and His ways are higher than ours, so we can trust Him.


Blessings

Zanele




Women of Reverence welcomes Zanele Baloyi as a guest contributor for this months theme.


I'm Zanele Baloyi, and I'm a deep thinker. That's just how God made me! I'm a beloved daughter, a social worker by profession, and a lover of people and God. I find joy in simple things like spending time in prayer or worship with friends. I love to laugh, and most importantly, I'm all about Jesus.





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