I grew up in a family where we knew who God was. We went to church, and we were involved in church. However, when we weren’t at church, time spent in the Word fell to the wayside. Don’t get me wrong, my parents were wonderful people, but we didn’t make that a priority in my house.
Going into adulthood, I realized I had deceived myself into believing I had a relationship with God. I knew God loved me, but I questioned whether I loved Him. I wasn’t living life in a way that was glorifying to Him.
I’m not only talking about my partying days. I’m talking about even when I “came back to him,” and thought I was doing it right. I was still searching for something to make me happy and to fill the emptiness I felt. It might have not been partying anymore, but it was in material possessions, fame, degrees, careers, etc. The next best thing—anything to make my life seem more exciting or that I was successful. The only time I felt joy was when these things were happening.
Plot twist . . . that joy was very temporary, and then, I was pursuing what was next.
Then the tables turned when my circumstances changed. I no longer had the freedom to chase the things I thought would make me happy. I no longer had control. I got extremely sick when I was pregnant with my daughter. I was forced to quit my job at a bank I loved. I was making good money, and I planned to build a successful career there after finishing my degree, which I also quit pursuing then.
After my daughter was born, I soon realized my son was struggling, and I had become blind to it. It was over the next year, I would learn I needed to be a full-time homemaker for many reasons. It wasn’t about me anymore. It was about my children.
I had to learn to let go of the idea of what I thought my life would look like and learn to find joy in the plan God had for my life that looked nothing like my own. That’s when I learned to find joy in small things. I found joy in my children’s laughter. I found joy in a cup of coffee in the morning. I found joy in riding with the windows down. I found joy in the way the air smelled in the morning. I found joy in God’s creations. I found joy in simply waking up again. I found joy in just being alive. Something I had lost.
I found that joy because of my relationship with Jesus.
I realized the pain was for a purpose. I truly believed it. Then once I was thankful again for the little things, I started to see other things happen. I started to see real progress with my son. I started to see God providing even if it was on His time. I found a church I love so much and that loves me and my family as much. That invests in all of us. That we can be involved in and keeps me on fire for Jesus.
I found a passion for serving. I found my passion wasn’t just singing and writing songs but also writing in general and telling stories and creatively ministering to others. I realized it was about Jesus and guiding others to him.
I have also realized my calling is to be a homemaker this season. Not just for my kids, but to give me the freedom to pursue other things I feel called to. I don’t know what else He has planned for me.
But all I can do is live every day trusting He’s going to have His way in our lives.
I’m not saying I don’t believe God wants us to do well in life because I believe He loves it when we dream big and when He’s our priority. But when we find ourselves wrapped up in that and not finding joy in Him and the things that truly matter, I believe it’s time to take a step back. I believe that’s what God did for me when I wouldn’t do it myself. I also don’t believe He expects us to be joyful when times are hard. Even Jesus wept. But I do believe whenever the hurt stops, we will understand why.