Sometimes in life we have these moments. I think Oprah calls them “Aha” moments, although apparently the term was coined in 1939. "Aha moment" is even in Webster's Dictionary, defined as: "a moment of sudden realization, inspiration, insight, recognition, or comprehension." Others might call them God moments. Whatever you want to call them, they are these moments when something just clicks, and you feel that you are exactly in the right place and the right time, and you were meant to be here now. To see, to hear, to learn, or to realize whatever it is that is placed on your heart in that moment in time. So much in life feels random and arbitrary, but these moments are different. These moments are divine. Or maybe it isn’t just one moment, but a string of seemingly unrelated moments that suddenly connect. Like when the jigsaw puzzle pieces go from a chaotic mess to becoming a picture that tells a story. You can’t see what it is yet, but something is taking shape. The plot thickens. I had one of those moments tonight, and while at first I thought it was just about one thing, as I reflect I can see that the one thing I thought it was about, was really just one piece of the big picture of my life.
The main reason I have been on the fence about switching my major from nursing to physical therapy, was that I wasn't sure there would be much opportunity to help in foreign missions as a PTA, as opposed to an RN, and that is very important to me. I have never even left the country, and I don't have a strong desire to travel the globe as a tourist, but I have always known that one day I would leave the comforts of home to fill a need somewhere beyond my comfort zone and minister to hurting people in a basic, tangible way. This is just a part of me that is. When sharing my desire to do medical missions/humanitarian aid, friends have asked, "Don't you think that is just a phase? Once you adopt a needy child do you think that urge will go away?" No, and that is kind of offensive. :/ Anyway... as I see the direction I feel that God is leading me (to help children with special needs), I keep feeling urged to do the PTA program. After all, helping kids right here at home is invaluable work!
My recent visit with a friend's son to his appointment at a local pediatric therapy clinic just was so amazing. The PT was so kind and engaging, and explained everything he was doing and encouraged me to help. Not in a direct physical way, but as an encourager, engaging in play designed to get the kids moving. It came so naturally to me, and I left feeling so great! There were children there with a broad range of needs. From ASD and Down Syndrome, to CP and Arthrogryposis. Yeah, google that one and learn how to pronounce it the right way. It took me a few tries. Spellcheck can't even get it right. Anyway, I could really see myself working in that setting with kids every day. A few days later at church, I recognized a familiar face. The Physical Therapist was there in the aisle in front of me. We exchanged hellos, and we were out the door. Apparently he and I attend the same church. Neat-o.
Last week I found out that the PTA program director at my college wants students to be ready to enter the program immediately after completing the (super-exciting-and-no-I’m-not-joking) Clinical Kinesiology course I enrolled in this semester. That wasn’t in the course catalog, but I guess who reads those anyway, right? Ahem, this girl does. And she highlights stuff. And prints it off. And paperclips it to something. However, there is no way I can commit to a two year intensive program when I will be bringing home our new baby boy within the year! I will be learning what his needs are and working on attachment and becoming a family, and also relearning how to parent a toddler, because now they wear cloth diapers and have alarms that you clip to them, and there are apps, and no walkers, and everything I ever used is now deemed a death trap and I have no clue!!! Sorry, deep breath... So, feeling discouraged and frustrated, and at the request of the instructor who also happens to be the program director, I withdrew from the course. Major. Bummer. Maybe it just won't happen for me. Maybe my "calling" is just my very own pipe dream, like when I wanted to be a photo journalist for National Geographic when I was 12. Fear... Doubt...
Tonight at church, that same PT joined the pastor up at the front to share his testimony about his recent medical missions trip to Honduras. Wait, what?! I knew that our church had several international missions, and I knew that the clinic sometimes went on missions. I had no idea that this PT was the medical missions leader at my church! The message that followed was about the authority of Jesus, demonstrated by His acts of love, the healing of the sick, and casting out demons. Aha. I am saying “no” to doubt and fear and “yes” to Jesus' authority in my life, in all of these areas that have been riddled with doubt and fear; our adoption process, our finances, and my career path. I cannot claim to trust God with my all while I simultaneously compartmentalize that trust. I cannot claim to give Jesus authority while I fret when I cannot see the puzzle pieces connecting right away. I know God sees the big picture. He writes the story. I cannot wait to see the next chapter in this story unfold!
What areas are you keeping in a Tupperware container in your heart tonight? Do you have spaces that you’ve quarantined from God’s grace or sovereignty? Do you doubt you are all you need to be for your children? Do you allow past (or present) failures or sins make you shrink or hesitate to move where you feel you are being led? Do you fear you are failing in some area of your life? Do you feel like maybe you missed your calling? Maybe you heard God wrong? Friend, you have everything you need to be exactly what God has called you to be, and the only thing that can move you off of that sovereign path is YOU. Doubt, fear, lies, shame… they all need an invitation to knock you down. Tonight, trade your fear in for fierceness. Trade your doubt in for some trust. Lift up whatever is crushing you tonight and give it to the One that has the authority. He still works miracles.
I absolutely love this song. It seemed appropriate to share tonight. Love ya, mean it.