Friday was the last day at my steady daytime job. I am now a full-time freelance and creative writer, supplementing my income through substitute teaching within the school district my teenage son attends. One of the main reasons included in my resignation letter was to spend more time with my son; the secondary reason was to pursue a career in writing. Another reason that did not get included in that letter was the call to ministry that is steadily growing within me. I know many people cannot understand this last reason. My son and ministry were the two main reasons I am stepping out in faith into God’s plan.
About three years ago, I was struggling with where I thought God wanted me to be. I have a heart for the broken, abused, and misguided souls who don’t know how much God loves them. I decided to move into jail ministry. Who could be hurting more than those who were imprisoned for their mistakes? But no matter how hard I prayed, no matter how many times I sought after the people in charge of this ministry, no matter which way I turned, no doors would open allowing me to move forward. I was standing in the hallway, pouting with no answers as to why what I wanted would not come to life.
I’m a recovering addict, and the branch of my church that serves those in recovery had planned a weekend spiritual retreat. During my time attending this retreat, I spent some quiet time seeking after God’s plan. We were then given time to meet with one of the speakers of the retreat. He prayed with me, and asked God for clarification. It was reaffirmed that God was preparing me to step into a ministry role. But the time was not right then; my focus was to be on my son. It became clear that if I was allowed to move into the role of jail ministry, I would become consumed with this ministry, and neglect my duties as a mother. Thank God for his wisdom!
So over the years, I’ve been seeking after God, praying for growth, and stepping out in faith to what he puts before me. This includes being a good wife and mother, leading youth girls at my church, and writing what God prompts me to write. During the weeks at home healing from hysterectomy surgery, it became clear that the time to let go of control and trust God was now.
Two days into this workweek when normally I would be stuck behind a desk, I got a phone call from one of my son’s teachers. A pattern had been emerging over the summer with him. His father and I had given him leeway to take responsibility. Now that school was back in session, changes had not been made, and it was already affecting his work at school. I cannot tell you how grateful I was to be home to prepare our house for the changes that needed to happen. Spaces were rearranged, organization was put into place, and when he got off the bus, I had already had time to pray and prepare for what needed to be said. I was able to stay calm during his emotional outburst. The storm was not nearly as bad as it could have been, and later he allowed me to help him study for a test. We also discussed what needed to happen this year to remain on track. I’ve been praying a lot for my son lately. I’ve been seeing God working on him a little at a time, and because I am choosing to listen to God and step out in faith, I can be here when needed.
My son and our furbabies. Never boring in our house!
As far as the writing goes, there are questions. I feel most at peace when writing about God. My freelance work so far has been for local publications. Much of what I write is to shed light on good things within the community. But my heart wants to write for God’s purposes. I’m not sure what will transpire here. I have a children’s book completed, with another in the series outlined. There’s a devotion in progress which was started during surgery recovery that can now be completed. A young adult fiction book based on spiritual warfare is about a quarter of the way written; this one will take a little more time. But there are bills to pay each month. My husband works fulltime, but it’s important that I contribute as well so we don’t get behind. So I’m once again relying on faith and trusting God as Provider to open doors.
The main point is this: God is faithful, and I will trust in him. It won’t be easy, and there will be times of doubt, but stepping out in faith and letting God have control is the only way this will work according to his plan.