I took a huge leap of faith today. I might even go so far as to say it was harder than being obedient when God called us to adopt.
I gave my notice at work. I’m quitting at the end of the month to be a full-time mommy to Jackson.
I have wrestled with this decision since he was born. Not because I don’t like being at home with him, because I love being at home with him! I love cuddling with him and watching him change. I can’t wait to take him to the zoo and story time. Despite wanting to experience all of these things with my Little Man, it took me longer to pull the trigger than it should have. The reason? I really didn’t want to give up my paycheck.
I don’t make a lot, but that extra little bit each month sure makes things easier and a little more comfortable. I’ve been very prideful. I’ve had a job since I was 18-years-old. I have always brought home a paycheck. Even though my hubby has practically begged me to just stay home, I wasn’t too excited about relying completely on God or him to provide – besides, I like to spend money a little too much (this is an area I am constantly working on!) and my husband is more of a tightwad. I didn’t want him telling me when and how I could spend money – I figured if I kept working, he wouldn’t be able to.
WOW! I might need a little attitude (and heart) adjustment!
I really am working on some of these issues… (more on that in another blog post!). The more and more I thought about it, the more and more I prayed, I realized that I was being selfish and ridiculous. I spent YEARS yearning to be a mom…my heart’s desire has always been to be a mom.
Well now I have the title I dreamed of for so long. I am Jackson’s mom – it’s the most important job God has given me (aside from being John’s wife). Quitting my job should have been a no brainer, but sometimes it’s tough to step out and trust God completely.
I started reading the book “7” by Jen Hatmaker and this quote really hit home earlier this week as I continued to struggle with whether or not to walk away from my paycheck.
“God was confronting me with my greed, excess materialism, consumerism, envy, pride, comfort…”
Why in the holy heck would I not quit my job and be a mommy after wanting so desperately to be one for so many years? Well…besides being too dependent on my paycheck, I really, really LOVE my job! I cried this morning when I told my boss I would be leaving.
God dropped this job in my lap after a pretty bold prayer. John and I were just beginning our Ethiopian adoption process and the Holy Spirit had really convicted me that there were poor and hurting people in my own community who needed to experience the love of Jesus. I prayed for God to show me how I could be His hands and feet in my city. The next week, I was sitting in a job interview at City Rescue Mission, the state’s largest homeless shelter and several days later I accepted the job.
God has used this job to rock my world! Before our adoption, before this job, I didn’t think much about what was going on across the world, or about the homeless man on the street corner of my own city. God used our adoption and my job to give me a heart for the poor and the socially outcast. He also put me at City Rescue Mission because He knew there would be a young girl living there who would need a family for the baby she wouldn’t be able to provide for. My baby boy!
Leaving this job is bittersweet. I come to a job where Jesus Christ is the most important thing! We start our day with worship and devotion every morning. I am greeted by clients who are excited to see me, who constantly ask about Jackson. God has given me the opportunity to stand in front of 300+ clients and share our amazing adoption story and numerous other stories of God’s faithfulness. I have held many, many children who needed to be loved and encouraged. It was in those moments when I tied their shoes, or let them climb into my lap that I was being the hands and feet of Jesus. Through the many kids at the Mission, God taught me that I could love a child, any child, no matter the color of their skin, as if they were my biological child. He filled the emptiness in my heart when I was longing to be a mommy by allowing me to love the kids who desperately needed someone to notice them – even through an act as simple as bringing a baggie full of cereal to a small boy named Levi each morning.
This job has humbled me. It’s made me desire less of this world and more of Jesus. When I first started working at the Mission, a homeless woman who I didn’t know at the time, pulled me aside and prayed the most heartfelt prayer for the Lord to bless me with children – at the time that prayer was spoken, Jackson had already been conceived.
There have been days at this job where I have been filled with so much joy that I thought I would burst, other days I have bawled like a baby because I have had to watch a child, who had stolen my heart, walk out the door, knowing that I would probably never see them again. Working at the Mission has been a pretty emotional roller coaster, but through it all God changed me. He has given me a heart and a passion for social justice. He has begun (there’s still a lot to do) to strip away the ugliness and worldly desires that I have. He has taught me to love and accept those that the world would like to dismiss.
I’m sure I will cry a few more times before the end of the month rolls around, but I am excited to be a full-time mommy! I won’t ever get this time with Jackson back. He’ll be 3-months-old next week – the time flies! I want to soak up every minute, every smile, and be the one to raise my son.
This new season will have it’s challenges – most of all I need to get rid of my pride and trust Jesus. I need to let go of the things of this world and stop putting my hope in my bank account. I need to do what has eternal value - raising a son to know the Love of Jesus. Because He really is ALL that I need!