Tuesday, May 19, 2015

What's Next?

Several months ago, I started praying for insight. For guidance. For help. 

You see, the calendar pages were turning, inching closer and closer to my last baby's first birthday. With that momentous day on the horizon came a feeling of uncertainty. Of confusion. Of restlessness.

I just wasn't sure what was supposed to be next for me. 

So. I started praying.  

Dear Lord, Please open my eyes. Show me the path You want my life to take next. Help me understand how I can best serve You and serve others. Please let me understand my purpose. Amen. 

Day after day, I prayed. 

The thing is, I went to school for a long time. I studied many, many, MANY hours and worked very, very, VERY hard. I took out substantial student loans, spent a year away from my hub, and was trained by some of the very best in my field. And then, I graduated with a doctorate in child psychology and went on to specialize in pediatric neuropsychology. At the time, I was certain that helping children, helping parents, helping families, through my profession was my destiny. It was the way I'd be able to do my part to serve those in need, and maybe, just maybe, positively affect change in the world along the way. 

And then I had children.

I had never dreamed of being a stay-at-home momma. Ever. 

And then I had children.

I had always envisioned myself being a full-time working momma. 

And then I had children.

So, after spending three years as a full-time working momma, I became a stay-at-home momma. This was, by no means, the life I had envisioned when I began my graduate education so many years ago. This was not the way I planned my life. But then? 

Then I had children.

And everything changed. The vision of what our family life, our home life, would look like, changed. 

It has been the greatest blessing of my life, to be able to be home with my babies. It is hard and beautiful and exhausting and amazing. I wouldn't trade it for the world. But here's the thing: I left a full-time working life of helping children with complex medical and psychological needs in order to be home with my three healthy (Praise God!) littles. And from the beginning of this transition, I have felt lucky and blessed and...guilty. 

How can I help others if I am simply staying home to care for my own three?
What about all that time, money, and effort spent on my education? 
How am I bettering the world? 

So. I started praying. For months, I would pray. What's next for me, Lord? Help me find my next path. And I heard...nothing. 

I continued to pray but also tried to take matters into my own hands. I offered up my services as part of a volunteer opportunity that arose through my church. This would be perfect! It's exactly what I had been waiting for! I would be able to use my education and my training to help children and adolescents in the Charlotte community. This was it! So, I submitted my name, described my qualifications, waited to hear back and heard...nothing.

Hmpf. Okay. Well, maybe that wasn't the path I was supposed to take. So. I continued to pray and continued to try to take things into my own hands. I submitted my children's book manuscripts to yet another publishing company and waited for a response. I had high hopes of my book one day appearing on every child's bookshelf, of being able to gift copies to children in need, of being able to donate some of the proceeds to local charities. This was it! So I waited to hear back and heard...nothing. And then...rejection.

My frustration grew. My confusion grew. My restlessness grew. Where was the path my life was supposed to follow next, now that my last baby was quickly becoming no longer a baby?

All along, I came praying. 

And then, one morning, many months in, I finally heard the answer, clear as day. I was standing in my quiet kitchen early in the morning, doing my daily devotional, and I heard a voice telling me what I had been waiting to hear: 

Do exactly what you're doing: Focus on your family. Focus on your children.

This was it. 

I know now that my calling is to be a momma. Not just any momma, but a momma whose responsibility it is to raise faith-filled, God-loving, good-hearted children
THIS is my job. This is the path I'm supposed to take: to raise children who will go on to positively affect the world. To raise children who will positively influence those around them. To raise children who will be strong leaders, who will show others the way, who will make good choices when faced with evil. To raise children who love God and love Jesus with all their hearts and help others feel the same way. This is my job.

And then, just last week, my hub shared an article with me that sent chills down my spine. I hear ya, Jesus, loud and clear. Thanks for the talk. Thanks for the sign.

I write this for any momma out there who may be wrestling with the same question of 'what's next?', the same feeling of restlessness, the same determination to do good for the world. Here's what I suggest:

(1) Pray about it. And listen. Pray about it. And listen. Wash, rinse, repeat. 
(2) Order this book. I've not yet finished it, but WHOA. It's another life-changer. 
(3) Call your momma. Tell her you love her. 
(4) Pray some more. Listen some more. 

Being a momma is a privilege. And now more than ever, my priority.

I have been created, gifted, and trained specifically for these children, today. I am their mother, for such a time as this (Esther 4:14).

1 comment:

  1. amen amen and amen!!!! Girl - you are doing KINGDOM work! and NOTHING is more important than that! and you are shining. it's evident in your spirit and in your sweet babies' faces!! xo