This summer has been an odd one for me for two reasons:
1 – the Lord told me to use this summer to focus less on striving and more on seeking Him; to simply enjoy the life He’s given me
2 – I recognized how dependent my life is on my community
Six years ago, I changed my job title from college ministry assistant to housewife. It was a job title I was most definitely not expecting and did not feel prepared for. Staying home and supporting my husband by taking care of the laundry, dry cleaning, grocery shopping, etc wasn’t a position I saw myself holding at the young age of 25-years-old. But with a husband who works 65+ hours on a slow week, it became clear that this was the best decision for our marriage. If I wanted to see my husband, to be available, and ready to spend time together in the later hours of the evening when he got home, not working was best way to make that happen.
I’d be lying if I said that adjusting to this role was easy. I often found myself getting defensive when people looked surprised that I was not working, without having kids at home. A lot of times I still feel misunderstood. But the more time I spend in this role, and in this non-conventional work life with my hubby, I’ve realized that the Lord carved out this place for me.
When I was little, and people asked what I wanted to do when I grew up, my most consistent response was, “I want to help people.” I didn’t have a particular method in mind, I just knew that I wanted to help people. Fast forward to today, being financially supported by my sweet husband, I am given the unique opportunity to be flexible with my time; making me available to help. Right away, I loved this blessing of being unemployed. I could run over to my sister’s classroom to help with chaotic kiddos, or have coffee with a friend struggling with the fog of depression. But what I discovered this summer in particular, is that God didn’t just bless me with the ability to be available, He blessed me with an availability that fits perfectly with the community He has given me.
Someone recently said to me, “I’m just realizing how many of your friends are teachers.” I laughed, affirmed her observation and in that instant, I realized how beautifully God orchestrated my availability for my community. Having free summers is the perfect example; it's an opportunity to connect at greater length with my friends comprised largely of teachers. (It’s no wonder summers feel a bit crazy; that’s when a lot of my people are free!)
The reason I share this with you is, on one hand a bit selfish. A lot of times I feel misunderstood. I feel like people look at my freer schedule, or the fact that I’m at the lake with a few friends again, with confusion or judgment. Perhaps it’s all in my head, but it’s hard not to feel like people look at me like a free-loader who does nothing but gallivant with friends. But I hope that sharing a bigger picture of who I am and the position the Lord has me in, I can be more understood. Being unemployed, I still struggle with feeling like my role is insignificant when compared to the rest of the world – so sharing this with you is a way of holding myself accountable and working to combat those lies. At this point in my life, I am able to adjust my schedule not based on what I need, but on what my community (my husband, my friends, my family) needs. Living this way, is a huge blessing, and an incredible opportunity that I want to take really seriously. God has me in this place for a reason, and I am determined to own that.
The second reason I share this is to encourage you that if you are struggling with feeling insignificant or simply being content with where the Lord has you, you are not alone. Take a minute today, do some self-reflecting and ask the Lord to show you a glimpse of why He has you where you are. Wherever you are, know that you are good, you are worthy, and you are incredibly significant.