In the fall of 2011, I felt God asking me to begin peeling away from some things that I needed to step down from. That I needed to become raw to Him. That He wanted the core of my being. No layers, just less of me and more of Him. In 2012, I began a journey that I had no control over but only knew that I needed to walk in obedience. I resigned from MOPS International as the Coordinator for Middle Tennessee after 7 years. I finished up previous speaking engagements and asked some of my speaker-friends to fill in the gaps. I stopped leading Bible Studies at our church and offering my help to any outside ministries.
Over the year I found myself in unfamiliar territory, an unfamiliar place. I found the world I created was just that, a world created by me.
It hurt. I didn’t want to accept it.
How could I be so selfish? In the rawness, I saw a ministry I created and how God would just shake His head and wonder, “When is she ever going to get it?” I wonder how many times He did that.
In my hurt, in my removing of flesh, it was as if a tug of war was going on. A war of looking back with my eyes (Hhmmm, what does scripture say about that?) and seeing what has been accomplished. I would ask God, “If I leave everything. If I stop blogging, stop speaking, stop leading, stop teaching, then what was all of it for? Then I would find myself even more selfish by asking, “Will they remember me? I worked so hard to get where I’m at and you were there with me through it all.” But God reminded me that He was there, I just put Him in the back seat while I drove.
In the spring of 2012, I began to only focus on my family and my full-time work. Not looking for the next speaking gig or chasing something that I wanted and not what He wanted.
Peeling of layers, upon layers, upon layers.
In 2013 I couldn’t be more at peace with who I am. I am so raw. The core of who I am sees herself in a mirror and only sees her as God sees her. Hands lifted, eyes looking up with a smile on my face as I quietly just listen. It’s funny how you teach it to others for so long and realize that over time you may lose yourself in the message. You forget that we have to be a continuous work in progress. Seasons may change but God never does.
There is peace in that.
In 2012, I threw up my hands and said no more. If I am to do anything for you, then God you are going to have to open up the doors. I am just a vessel that is yours to use for however you see fit.
It seemed as though the only thing I could hear was crickets. Dead silence.
All I knew what to do was just to stay obedient to what He asked for me to do in 2011.
This year I can truly say that God has open every door that has come my way. Not once did I go looking. Not once did I network to find the next big thing. I just let God control my life.
When you do that, big things happen.
First it was Blissdom. Having that incredible opportunity to be a speaker in Dallas was a highlight that I am thankful for.
A few weeks ago I received an email to speak at a Women’s Conference in Scottsdale in January 2014. My eyes looked up and just smiled. “God, I am yours to use.”
Now, recently, I won a contest. The contest was to be on the book review group of Pursuing Justice and once in the group you have been entered to win an all-expense paid trip to a mission’s trip with Food for the Hungry. When a friend contacted me to let me know I won, I didn’t quite remember entering for anything. I just wanted to read the book. (Which is unbelievable by the way!) I took a little over a week. Talked to my husband and the kids about it. My husband is my biggest fan and encouraged me to, “just listen to what God wants for you”. When I talked to my kids about it, our oldest daughter said “Mommy, you should go. We all need to help those that need help the most.” My heart was full.
I said….Yes to this.
I don’t know what God has for me but I realized these last few years that that is exactly where God wants me. Me not controlling the who, what, when, where or even how but just letting God lead me.
I feel like a kid again. Holding the hand of Jesus as he walks me to and from. Kneels down, looks at me and smiles, points and says, “there”.
Raw, open and down to the core is where I am and where I want to stay.