You are there for a Purpose

It had been about 4 weeks since I returned to work and I was completely overwhelmed. Between 2 kids, nursing, working, trying to fix our house, and simply staying alive, I was beat. On top of just trying to figure out how to be a working mom of two, I was also facing an up hill battle at work. Both my home life and my work life seemed completely daunting – where do I even start?

How can I leave this cuteness???

Sometimes you just need a friend to speak truth, amiright? I called a mentor and friend of mine and we talked for a long time. We strategized and planned and it helped, but I still was feeling burdened, until she said one line… “You are there for a purpose.”

“You are there for a purpose”

Guilt and disappointment followed me on my way into work most mornings. Coming back to work after my first baby was a necessity, in more ways than strictly financial. I needed the human adult interaction and to use my brain again. I needed the challenge and I enjoyed showing the world that I could do it and be successful. But after my second was different. My first baby made me a mom, but my second baby helped me realize the small joys that come with babies, kids, and motherhood. All of this made returning to work really difficult. I felt guilty that I wasn’t at home raising my children. Shouldn’t they have their mom around all the time? Why am I paying someone else to raise my kids?

Now, the saving grace of this situation is that we were able to move home where our parents live. My mother in law graciously agreed to watch the boys when both Bryan and I are working. I can’t explain the peace that I feel knowing that we get to leave our boys with family. I am so thankful, but I still feel guilty! I never wanted to be a mom that depended on someone else to raise her kids (really, I am so fiercely independent that I hate admitting I need help or assistance with anything – but that’s for another blog post).

So all these feelings were building and building. I felt guilty, ashamed, overwhelmed, exhausted, I was at the end of my rope. But then truth was spoken, “You are there for a purpose.” I believe that no matter where life takes you, God has a purpose. Every circumstance, every encounter, every stressful or challenging thing can be turned over to Him and is an opportunity to turn toward Him.

This is the truth I want to tell you today, YOU ARE HERE FOR A PURPOSE.

Whether you are a college student, a working mom, a stay at home mom, a single woman, or a widow, you are HERE for a purpose. And more specifically, you are in exactly the right spot to be used for a purpose. It may not be immediately visible to you and it might take some thought or reflection, but I know it is there.

And more specifically, you are in exactly the right spot to be used for a purpose.

Here is one more opportunity for me to turn toward God. Every morning I get to demonstrate His love and grace (however imperfectly) to a group of adults that otherwise I would have zero connection. I cannot tell you the number of conversations I have had in my office and I leave thinking, that was a total God thing. I also get to have the experience of being humbled almost daily, my pride checked, because I make mistakes and fall. Whether noticeable to others (and sometimes VERY noticeable) or in the silence, I am consistently reminded of God’s grace with me and therefore how much grace I need to have with others. Most notably, my 2-year-old who literally does not listen to 80% of what I say.

So for this season of littles, babies, working, surviving, and figuring out what my purpose truly is, I will continue to turn toward God. He has a purpose for me, and I believe he has a purpose for you. How can you turn toward God today? What would that look like? Let me know in the comments!

I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me

Psalm 57:2

Abide (…waiting part 2)

As promised, this is my follow-up post to …Waiting…

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The past 3 months have been incredible for our family. When I wrote my last post I was only 9 days into a 30 day prayer covenant (If you aren’t familiar with the practice, you commit to praying for a specific area, person, action, etc for 30 days and invite others to join with you.  During the 30 days you work to seek God’s direction and voice instead of trying to take action on your own or control the outcome).  The 30 days was challenging, but helped me in so many ways.

The main effect of the prayer covenant was teaching me to abide.  Abide is a synonym for wait, but unlike waiting which is passive, abide is an active verb meaning “to stop temporarily and wait for” (thesaurus.com).  God calls us to abide in him, but I often don’t practice this and honestly, I don’t know if I understood what it meant until we went through this process.

After asking my company if they would relocate me to Cincinnati it was unclear if this was going to happen – enter 30 day prayer covenant.  This time was a very anxious period of time for me and every day I had to turn my anxiety and worry over to God.  I constantly asked God to come over the decision, help us know the right decision to make, and provide financially for a long move.  There were many days at work where I had to write down my anxieties and put them in my prayer box to try to physically separate myself from them (by the way this totally works for me – if you have worry/anxiety issues I highly suggest this practice!). But ultimately, the anxiety I was experience lead me to abide with God through the process and wait on him. Slowly, I was able to more easily turn my fears and worries over to God and I felt his peace come over me day by day.  I started to believe that no matter what, God would provide for us and He would see us through.

Towards the end of our 30 days I got news from my company that they were willing to relocate me to the Cincinnati office! This was such a blessing! And I was so excited to know that we were moving home.  I think that it is easy to look at this circumstance and say “God gave us the desire of our hearts” – which is totally true! In this instance, our desires lined up with God’s timing.  But what if He hadn’t? What if he would have asked us to stay where we are? Because I had been practicing abiding with God I had gained the confidence to know that if we weren’t able to move home he would have provided for us wherever we were.

I am so thankful and so excited to move back to Cincinnati! I know that this is an answer to prayer and that we are beyond blessed to have the opportunity to move. I am so thankful to work for a company that supports family and work-life balance that they see the importance of being near loved ones and supporting their employees. It has been awesome to experience God’s love, peace, and provision through this process.

Ultimately, I want to encourage you, friend! I encourage you to pray and ask God for the desires of your heart and experience a journey with Him.  If you haven’t ever done something like this – you can’t do it alone! I would love to partner with you and see where God leads! I would just invite you to try and see what happens, see what changes you experience, see what you realize during a waiting and abiding period. I think that no matter what you will learn something about yourself and get to experience God in a different way.