Nothing about this season of life has been what we thought it would be. We planned, and we over-planned, we fell flat on our faces, and we're still here. Now that the dust has settled, all of these changes are starting to hit me. I wake up and realize we own a home. I reflect on the summer and feel the weight of mercy over all of the job search details. I am overwhelmed realizing we are now halfway through this pregnancy- halfway to meeting our baby girl.
I am not going act like I know what I'm doing. I have no idea. I get scared, I panic, and I feel unworthy to be her mom. As I find my bearings after all the change, I've been hesitant to take my fears to the Lord. I don't feel angry or even disconnected with God, I just feel shellshocked. Almost nothing around me looks familiar- as if I have moved to another country, with a new body... and lots of trips to the bathroom.
So finally a few nights ago, I said something to Him. Simply : "What do I do?"
I knew the answer. I knew the answer because I have been here before... asking questions... and I have already received the answer a few times over.
About a year ago, I was deeply in love with my daily rhythm of contemplation and prayer, but I wanted more. I had this burning question inside me. I had to know. So I asked the question everyday, "What is my purpose?" For weeks I found myself living out of this hunger. I was excited about everything because of course, this could be the answer I've been looking for. I would go into the dark room, light a candle, and ask about my purpose, and then go back out into the world and try to figure out what is was.
One day, in that room, I had a vision of purpose (yes, I said the "v" word) ... I saw myself in that dark room with that candle, on my face in prayer. That was it.
At first I was honored and a little relieved, but my thoughts began to shift.
... that's it... that's my purpose...
Wait.... That's it?
That was not enough for me. How was I supposed to change the world with a purpose like that?
So, I started asking a different question. I thought maybe God could benefit from me being more clear about what I was looking for.
"What do you want people to say about me at the end of my life?"
Here are the acceptable answers: The title of a book I will write, the name of a company to start, an address for someone that I need to help, a mission statement, some sort of prize/ medal / honor to strive for. Really I would have accepted any version of these. I was determined to hear, and pressed on in asking daily.
One day in that room with that candle ... "what will people say about me... what do you want people to say about me..."
" s h e p r a y s "
I broke wide open.
I am reminded today of the significance of that moment. My big dreams and desires, not eclipsed by this revelation but made whole. It's a perfect gift for a recovering people pleaser to have been instructed not to do first but to seek first. To change my lens from a worldly one to an eternal one.
I am fulfilling my purpose when I allow my dreams be informed and catalyzed first in the dark room, in total surrender.
Of course I still don't know what I'm doing. It's easy to be anxious over what kind of mom I will be, what pictures should be on the nursery wall, and everything in between. I don't know how I am going to keep her safe at all times. I don't know how I'll find a work-life balance. I don't know how I will prioritize my marriage or fight for the dreams that have been put on my heart. But I am freed from drowning in the questions and fears about being a mom to this little girl growing inside me. My purpose is simple, and I have been given my first stepping stone for any question I have. As I dream of who baby Boitmann will be, there is one thing I hope more than anything else.
I hope she prays.
I'll always go first to make space for your story.