I'm going to do my best to explain this, but, you see, it is a general overwhelming feeling that is really tough to put into words. This is going to be a long, seemingly random hodgepodge of stories. Nevertheless, if you feel like reading, here goes:
Six years ago, Chris and I were still fairly newlyweds: 3 years, but no kids, enjoying married life, our jobs and hanging out with friends. But we started to feel unsettled. There has to be more to life. Yes, we wanted kids, and they would come, in time. But we felt like God wanted us to do even more. We are both shy by nature, uncomfortable until we really get to know someone, yet we both have this passion for people. Especially youth. We were working for a church, Chris as a youth leader and I was the part-time secretary. We were building our new Real Estate business. Chris was also teaching and I was finishing school to become a teacher as well as working a great local small business getting to use my Spanish. Yes, we were juggling many balls in the air. Still, we felt like God wanted MORE.
Since then, we've added three kids here and one in heaven. Plus two in Colombia we feel are our own though we can't bring them home due to immigration's red tape. We have served in various churches and made a full circle coming back to our home church at Burnt Hickory Baptist. And the feeling that God wants MORE has only gotten stronger.
We thought it would be fulfilled by adopting Brayan and Yorely, but the more we obeyed the more red tape we were dealt.
When Chris was layed off we thought maybe God wanted to send us elsewhere for a job. In an attempt at obedience, Chris sent out applications all over. No reply.
Before we get any farther, let me explain that I do know that God has given us one of the most important ministries you could have: our kids. We value that tremendously and do not take it lightly. However, as we go about our day-to-day activities, I still have this incredibly unsettled feeling that He wants me to do MORE.
We have inside us a burning passion for three major groups of souls:
This passion is an all-consuming, deep-burning fire inside both of us. And so far, with no outlet. What happens to a building when an all-consuming fire burns within it? It implodes and falls apart. That is pretty much where we are today.
- Kids & teens who need love.
- Young people who are bombarded through music, TV and movies with the cultural message that pre-marital sex is not only OK, but necessary in a relationship in today's modern world.
- Married couples who face struggles with sexual temptation outside of God's beautiful design.
***Don't get me wrong, we love our life and we realize we are greatly blessed. And we are GRATEFUL.***
But it is this very grattitude that creates in us the desire to give back. To serve our Father who has lavished so many blessings upon us.
Yet we remain lost in the dark. So many paths we thought He was guiding us on have failed:
- Real Estate: We sincerely thought we were called to provide a much needed service (Real Estate) in a much needed different way (with honesty, integrity and no-compromise dedication) - not that there aren't any such Realtors already, however, we know from experience, there are not many. The industry is overrun with deciet, selfishness, and general lack of customer service. It has been tough holding the line of black & white, right and wrong. So many in this industry believe in "gray areas". However, as much as we have poured into this business, it has yet to succeed. And I am not sure how much longer I wish to pursue it.
- Other Careers: Besides Real Estate, I have also had the dream, desire, or calling (?) to:
- be a history, music or drama teacher
- pursue photography
- write fiction novels
- write books about God's beautiful amazing design for sex
All of these are paths I could see God leading me on to reach people for Him. I have unfinished pieces, schooling, or projects for all of the above, and more. Many people struggle with finding what they "want to be when they grow up." Though I genuninely love what I do as a part-time stay at home mom, sales rep and Realtor, I still feel like I am not where God wants me.
- Adoption: We both knew we were called to adopt since we got married. We trusted God would show us the who, when, where and how when His time was right. We were sure this was confirmed in July with Yorely and Brayan. However, since then, one road block after another, it seems like perhaps He is still saying "not yet." With Yorely's 16th birthday arriving in March, the deadline is quickly approaching.
- Youth Work: We have lovingly and excitedly served in various churches. Just when it seems like things were about to "take off" God gave us a clear sign it was time to move on. We have had to leave so many students we had fallen in love with, churches we grew to be family with, and goals we were about to see met. It was all in God's timing and we heard of wonderful, great things that occurred with each group after we left. Still, it hurt to not be a part of that.
I know it may seem like I am being ungrateful, and I assure you I am not. I truly love my life. I feel genuinely spoiled by my Abba Daddy. Precisely so, I want to serve Him. I want to share this love inside me that feels about ready to explode. I was to let this burning passion consume others for Him. But how? This is a question I have yet to clearly hear Him answer. I have so many ideas coming at me a hundred miles an hour, but no outlet. No confirmation from Him where and how to do them.
I am about ready to implode, so I had to let it out somehow. This post was more a therapeutic one than a purposeful one. Unless, of course you know how to answer the question. = )
Since posting this, I had many friends and family members make suggestions, and I thank you! I was humbled by your suggestions, and honored by the idea of some of the things you could see me doing. And your encouragements let me to seriously think about your suggestions. Then after a series of events, I suddenly find myself studying photography and getting help from two professional portrait photographers! I AM BLOWN AWAY!
It is amazing how God leads us, step by step through the plan He already has for us. When I posted this I was feeling stuck in a rut, and with no direction to go in. Now, I am thoroughly enjoying my photography studies, and thrilled at the idea that this may really be my calling. I have met so many people already and can see how this could lead to meeting many, many more. And since life is all about relationships to me, what a perfect avenue this could be! I can't wait to see where God takes me from here.