I think a lot about God’s calling. I write about it a lot because I see the question everywhere and the anxiety in my friends too. There is so much fear of making the wrong choice or straying from His path. One of my dearest friends worries even more than I do and it is painful to watch her make an autopsy of her life.
Everything is weighed and picked apart. It is separated and tested. This strong woman shivers under anxiety. It breaks my heart.
Maybe you’re like us.
A few weeks ago I wrote about playing the little temperature checking game with God. Is this where You want me to be?
This morning I have snuggled and played with a child who I have walked through some hard times with. As we chatted over breakfast, I looked at his sweet face and I asked myself, “Would I have ever said yes to loving him and caring for him for the rest of my life if I had known the turmoil and pain that came with that decision?”
Sometimes, though rare, step-parents are called to be primary caregivers. In some situations a parent may decide they cannot do it and sign over their rights to their child. I cannot fathom the amount of thought and pain that goes into those tough choices.
In other situations a biological parent may be found incapable of caring for their child by a judge. I ache just thinking about the amount of discernment and consideration that judges face in these scenarios.
Sometimes there are parents in both homes who are very much involved and in the picture. Sometimes adults execute this beautifully for their children. Sometimes not so much.
The point is that being a step-parent is a choice. There is no biological link or standard of social acceptability that a step-parent has to rise to. There is no ball and chain and certainly no bars on the windows.
Every single day I choose my step-kids. To me, my son is a no-brainer. Life without him is foreign and unbearable. That is just my perception as a parent. I do not call this right or wrong. I personally would never do life without my son. He is stuck with me!
If God had revealed every detail of His will for me, I wonder if I would have been willing to go. I quarrel with God sometimes, do not let me fool you. I give Him, “Sure, I will go, but just tell me where I am headed.”
The answer I always find is God’s beautiful way of saying, “Do not be concerned about where we are going. Just know that I am going with you.”
If God told us the heartache, the bad days, the pain, the depression, the anxiety that we might endure while actualizing His will, would we be willing? Probably not.
If I had known the exact situations my family would face as a direct result of my choice to be step-mom, I may have missed out on the early morning snuggles and the nerf wars. I may have missed out on the homeruns and the recitals. I would have less kisses goodnight and less voices in the backseat telling me what they’re excited about for the day. I may not get to hear singing in the shower or all about the latest crush. I LIVE FOR THIS STUFF!!!
There is no doubt in my mind that I am exactly where God wanted me to be. My husband is a rockstar of a dad, but if I’m honest, I don’t know how it would all happen without me. On the opposite side of the coin, I think my son had a great life before my husband, but I never could have taught him some the things my husband has. We all stick together like we do because we know in our hearts that we belong together, no matter who likes it or not.
God may not give us details of what lies ahead. I’m not certain that is a bad thing. Look at your pastor this morning. What if God had told them the number of funerals they would preach when He called them into ministry? What about the number of members they would counsel who were broken and riddled with addiction and sin? Would they have been so willing to give you the good news today if they had known that some of the very children in their Sunday school class endured trauma or were missing a parent?
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you
Those are hard things. No matter your path, there will be hard things. Can you imagine not having that child with a health problem? Can you dream of a life without those patients you serve? Does your life look complete without your congregation? Would you be able to live without that nagging wife?
I have faced some dark things in my life. The hardest things I have ever had to live through have happened to me as a stepmother. I have never been so worried, so sad, so hurt, so appalled, or so bewildered.
I have also never had a heart so full, a smile so big, a house so full of giggles, or a family so complete. I am willing to go where God calls. I will go to the end of the Earth. I will walk through fire blindfolded and I will warm whatever courtroom chair He needs me to. I will willingly go where God wants me because I know He is along for the ride. If God is for me, whom OR WHAT shall I fear?
A little mystery never hurt anyone. We do not need to know every detail of God’s will for our lives. We just need to remind ourselves that He will be there with us through it all.
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
I will go, Lord. Let me get my coat.