Friday, January 23, 2009

Finding Fulfillment

I am still without a job. While some might welcome this reality, I am done with it. I have a need to do. I willingly admit that I define myself by what I do. This is both good and bad. This is good, given that my vocation is in ministry. It is a fine thing to fully immerse yourself in work if that work is full-time ministry (which we're all called to, by the way...but that is another post). It is bad because it means that I am discouraged when not in my own, boxed up understanding of full-time ministry. In my heart-of-hearts, I know that ministry cannot be limited to any job and that I am in-ministry right now - in my marriage, in my family, and in my friendships. But I yearn for the challenge and fulfillment I get from a job in the field.

I honestly think I'd be ok with doing anything right now (like, working at Hallmark...which I am not far from considering), if I felt like I had enough avenues to explore God's call on my life (even on a volunteer basis or through writing) OR if I was raising kiddos (also on the horizon...but not just yet!). Right now, I just feel a bit limited and a lot discouraged. I am looking into some pretty exciting opportunities (more later) and planning to get started writing,'s just a frustrating time for me. I feel...useless. Jason wholeheartedly disagrees and thinks that God is just giving me a season of freedom. He also says that there's a lot going on right now (my little sis is getting married and moving to Green Bay) and that my being jobless affords me flexibility I wouldn't have otherwise. Still, as I said before, I am ready for new opportunities.

We shall see what happens next. Until then, I covet your prayers and welcome your comments! I will keep you posted on it all as it happens...

(DISCLAIMER: I feel very fulfilled in marriage and in my relationships right now. It has been a blessing to be able to simply be a wife, friend, sister, and daughter. Please don't get me wrong...I love those things. I just desire...more!)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Walking without Worry

I have been reflecting a lot lately about what it means to walk with God through the details and difficulties of life. I mean with Him. Not just near Him, but beside Him. I find that each new journey in my life either threatens or strengthens this. That is not an earth-shattering find, I know.

It seems that as I look back on my life, I've just traded old struggles with new ones and anticipate others to come (as we have kids, etc.). Thinking about these things makes me...worry. This is something I am really good at. Not-so-good at trusting that God is with me and that we walk through it all together. I know it, but I don't know it. You know?

So...I was sifting through some old quotes and prayers that I've collected and stumbled across this one. My mom sent this my way (because she's inspirational like that) during a particularly trying time in my life. I need to be reminded of this truth even on my best days. I thought it might encourage you on your journey.

"We are told that God is love; that he takes note of every sparrow that falls and even the hairs of our head are numbered. This means that the least among us is very important to God.

God is described as a forgiving, loving Father. In building faith it is of first importance to integrate this truth into your mind. Every day say aloud,'I am a child of God. God is interested in the smallest detail of my life. God loves me.'
If any doubt arises, reaffirm and reiterate God's love and hold to that thought until it is a fact.

A man asked,'What is the greatest truth of the world?" I turned the question back to him and he said, 'It is that we are not alone.' In building your faith emphasize the greater truth that no matter how dark it gets, how lonely you feel, or how you may experience rejection, you are not alone. Repeat every night as you go to sleep and when difficulty comes: 'I am not alone, God is with me.'

Because God loves you and is always with you, you can have confidence that if you live His way to the best of your ability and put your trust in Him, you will develop a faith that will withstand every shock in this life. A method for meeting difficult responsibilities that can be of immeasurable help is to simply say: 'God please stay with me and help me and I will try to do the best I can.' And then add confidently the affirmation: 'Thank-you, God, for helping me now.'" - Peale