Lately I’ve felt like I’ve been going though a mid-life crisis, except I’m only 34 so its too young for that isn’t it?
For the past ten years, I’ve done what I was supposed to. I went to University, received a BBA, got married, had three kids and got a good job.
Recently my husband and me made the decision to stop having kids and it left me sad and a bit depressed. That’s a really hard milestone to move on from. No more babies, no more diapers, no more cuddles.
At one point I actually asked Mark if he would consider a fourth. He looked at me as if I was a crazy person. I told him I wasn’t done. A part of me felt empty and I wanted to fill it back up.
I tried to reason with myself that I was done. I knew realistically I didn’t want to go through another pregnancy, or breastfeed, or stay up all night with a crying baby. Yet, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t rationalize away that feeling of wanting another one.
Since Mark was in no way shape or form prepared to get a reversal, I realized I was going to have to come to grips with the fact that we were going to stay a family of five.
If I wasn’t going to have anymore babies then what was I supposed to do? For the past five years it was baby making or taking care of babies. And now, just like that, it was gone. So if my purpose wasn’t to have any more babies, I needed to find a new one.
What was once enough for me (my family, work, hobbies) was no longer. There was something missing.
I started my quest to find the missing element by self-reflecting. As I’ve gone through this quest, here are some of the things I’ve learned so far:
Find out what your gifts are. What are you good at? What can you spend hours doing while thinking it’s only been ten minutes? If you are anything like me, you may say, I don’t know. I can easily point out what others are good at but when it comes to self-reflection, I struggle.
So here is how I started to figure it out. I took the Standout Assessment. If you have ever taken a personality test like insights or others, I found this one to be so much better. It costs $15 US to take it, or you can buy the book and in the back it will give you an access code to take the test online. But this test was so eye opening for me that in my mind it was well worth it. It will tell you what your strengths are and then offer suggestions on what sorts of careers would compliment your strengths. It was scary how accurate it was for me in describing my personality and how I am. It gave me that “ah ha” moment. If your interested here is the link https://standout.tmbc.com/ Click on Purchase the Assessment that is in blue under the button Corporate Account.
Next, I took a Spiritual Gifts Test. I actually never knew these tests existed. But what these tests do is they help you identify what spiritual gifts God gave you. I first heard about it through a life coach in my writing club. If you Google free spiritual gifts test, there are a lot of great ones that will come up. I never thought I had a spiritual gift, or really any gifts for that matter, so I decided to give it a try. What I found was, I did have a spiritual gift without ever realizing it.
It’s such a good feeling to be able to pinpoint what your gifts are because then you can focus on cultivating and nurturing them. You can start to look at ways to use them.
From those tests God started to point me in the direction of writing. I would have never thought of it myself, and I questioned him on it. Who am I to write? What the heck am I going to say? But he kept showing me through subtle ways that I should start to write.
And so that is my final point.
God is the one who gave you those gifts; so once you’ve figured them out, ask the one who gave them to you, what it is you should do with them? And when he answers, be prepared. It may not make any sense, and it will take you out of your comfort zone. But if you accept his challenge, if you can step out in faith, the reward is so much greater than what you could have ever imagined.
God put this video in my path a few days ago as I was trying to make some life decisions that would affect our family in a big way. I felt him calling me to go one way, but that would require me to let go of my safety net. If I did it, there would be no back-up plan; it was an all or nothing type of situation.
As I was struggling with what to do, this video popped up on my Pinterest page. It’s of Chip and Joanna Gaines. If you’ve ever watched HGTV, you will know who they are. They are amazing renovators who turn old run down houses into beautiful homes. They are also a strong Christian couple.
The biggest thing that I took away from this video is, “When you take a step out in faith, when it makes absolutely no sense, that is where the greater reward is.”
I believe God wanted me to hear that and if you are reading this, I believe he wants you to hear it as well.
I don’t want to play it safe anymore. I want to step out in faith. I want to get to that other side. And I know God can take me there.
Are you ready to start your journey?