When Change Didn’t Come Easy

1402529_43662915When I was younger, my dreams were of being married and having children in addition to accountant extraordinaire and being an overall superb being. My goal of being engaged and wed the summer after high school graduation didn’t come as I imagined and the white picket fence I desperately wanted was nowhere in sight. With no martial prospect or relationship, I pressed forward doing what I did best, work. I was a hard worker and valued the raises and positions held as my contribution to the world and in turn my self-worth. I loved the feeling of a pat on the back for a job well done, increased monetary provision, and having a title that came with a business card. The dreams of my younger days became overshadowed by my new identity of titles and accolades of man when out of the blue came a special relationship turned engagement.

Before we married, I found out I had endometriosis and were unsure if children would be in our future. My childhood dreams reappeared before my eyes and the burning in my soul of mom encompassed me. I had to be a mom, why would my husband want me if I could not give him children. Allowing fears and lies control over my mindset, I took comfort as my soon-to-be husband never batted and eye in disbelief. He always told me, “The Lord will provide regardless of what stands before us” and two years later we had our first child.

I went back to work and continued with my valued titles of accomplishment, work, wife and now mom. I brought any remaining work home at the end of the day, ignored my husband, tended to our baby, and fell exhausted into bed starting over the next morning. This life wasn’t all I imagined it being and quickly found out I couldn’t compete with all the demands of my newly added titles. My stress levels increased when to our surprise we were expecting our second child while our first was just four months old!

As it says in Revelation 3:7 NLT “What he opens, no one can close; and what he closes, no one can open.”  About five months into my second pregnancy, I was placed on bed rest and realized God began closing a door and panic consumed me. I didn’t want this door closed! I could do it all! I needed my work, my titles because without them, I was a nobody!

Twelve weeks after my second child was born the door shut firmly on where my identity lied and opened a new one revealing a change that would not come easy. I was now a wife and stay-at-home mom of two God-given precious little ones whom I loved dearly and being their mommy, but that didn’t stop me from pounding on the closed-door. I thought if I sold this or that, then I would help my husband recoup the income loss from my job. I thought if I’d do something, anything, I’d be a big asset to my family and earn the title of awesome mom. I wanted or I should say needed something giving me the self-worth and identity desired.

In all the striving I became so lost. My very dream, an answered prayer, living and sitting before me and all I saw was a “worthless” frazzled mom, complete with spit-up down the front of my shirt and big dark circles under my eyes. I had no one giving me accolades, no one seeing me perform,  no acknowledgements  for my efforts nor an increase in pay to drown out all the negative thoughts of myself. All I once valued to make me worthy, thrown on the ground, jumped on and hurled across the room. Who was I behind all these titles?

That first few years were extremely hard. I suffered from deep depression and endured marriage counseling but even that didn’t provide answers to my deeper longing of self-worth and acceptance. In sheer exhaustion one day, I fell to my knees and yelled at God in anger asking why He couldn’t just deliver me from all this and give back what made me who I was. For the first time in months, I felt a peace within and heard a new voice, “The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” (2 Corinthians 5:17)

I hadn’t embraced this new life as I was still trying to live my old life. The wants and desires of a childhood dream stood before me, not recognized, as I wondered in the midst of an identity crisis. I couldn’t see the closed-door as a blessing nor could I see the open door as an answered prayer from long ago. My life lived for titles and the praises of man instead traded-in to a higher calling outside myself. The greater purpose behind the closed-door finally seen and accepted! The open door, a new journey, and upon walking through that door, I’m seen, embraced, and praised for my efforts! Everything I desired behind the behind the closed-door there but finally realized in a new and extraordinary way.

Over the years, God continues teaching me through grace and mercy but most importantly He has given me a new vision of who I am and where my worth lies. I no longer find my worth in worldly titles and have exchanged them for titles that thieves can’t steal nor moths rot away. I am a daughter of the King of Kings, I am more precious than rubies, dearly loved and valued. My delight is doing the things He has asked of me, “For the Lord our God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” (Zephaniah 3:17)

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