Tuesday, February 25, 2014

An Update and Another Jonah- What's Important?

So about 2 weeks ago I did a post titled, “My struggle to find.. me while looking for God's direction!" and during the writing of that post I had some personal revelations. Some people have read it and told me in person their feedback, all have been supportive. I have begun to call that post, “A Jonah Moment” in reference to the bible study class and it was a Jonah moment of realizing that I was making a bigger mistake by keeping everyone at arms length so they couldn't see my weaknesses. Well here I am again, life has thrown some new curve balls and I am looking for some new answers. While working on my bible study, I had another “Jonah Moment!”

 Let's start with the last 2 weeks, Marty got a travel contract and started working nights again. He is back in pediatrics and working Congenital Heart Surgical Intensive Care unit (his real nursing love!) The kids and I are getting our act together with schedules and getting schoolwork done as well as spending time working with another friend that is home-schooled as well to do some group activities. We have got a garden started outside and seedlings growing inside. Life is beginning to feel back to normal. Yea, I spoke too soon!
The plan was, let Marty work the contract while we wait for his Texas nursing license comes through and continue to look for that permanent position in the mean time. The contract is through mid-May and could have a possibility of extending if needed. The pay is good and we have benefits starting soon. Then we got a letter last Saturday from Texas Board of Nursing, they want to transfer his application to another department for further review and he will not be allowed to work as a nurse in the state of Texas as a nurse starting the end of the current contract, until the other department is completed their review and he is issued a Texas license. They also state that the review will take a minimum of 4 months and could take longer than 4 months to complete. So, Marty can't take any permanent position in Texas and can't take an extension on the contract, at least not as a nurse.
So now what? The kids are planning on going to preteen camp with church this summer, Andy was just talking about Spinal Bifida camp this summer. We started the garden and have been making our plans for growing it. The kids have also made a good friend and enjoy spending time with him. We have a house full of furniture and appliances (some that we are still paying for) so what would we do with all of it?
What are our options? Well, Marty could take a travel contract out-of-state without us for 3 months, so the boys could attend their events and camps. During that time we can hope the license comes through but no guarantee it will and then what if it doesn't?? We could put things into storage and travel with him, boys would miss everything. Marty could find a job that doesn't require a license, few a far between and at a lower pay rate than RN. We could just sell off everything and hit the road again with no plans of returning?

So, let's talk about my “Jonah Moment”. This week was asking for my most wildest dreams, I was to think about my “divine interventions” of late, and come up with a dream that would be the most phenomenal outcome. Well, for me that is hard to do. I really don't have too many dreams. Yes I have, “It would be nice,” statements, but as for real dreams I don't have them. Long term plans- I don't make them. Our lives have been too “on the fly” for far too long, I have stopped dreaming big. So I sat there thinking, I even asked Marty- he couldn't answer either.
I finally wrote about what I would really want if I could have anything. “A home, truly our home with a yard and a garden, income- enough to meet our needs and more for our wants, extra to share and give without worry. A 2nd car and the 1st one to be in good repair.” That's it! I wish our car was fixed and we had a home of our own. I wish we had an income source that took care of us and wasn't going to disappear at the end of a contract or with a licensing agency delay. Seems too simple right?
Well then later in the same day's assignment, it covers simple obedience and talks about remembering people who made an impact in your life with their small ways of simple obedience. I thought of the older woman from our first church, she continued to come to church and share her love of God with all while fighting cancer, never loosing faith that God was in control of her outcome. And then there was Skip, he always has a smile on his face, it was only missing when something was gravely wrong. He had migraines that would sometimes remove that smile and he said he was showing God's love through his smile. Because of his smiling attitude, his coworkers threw him a “Roast” party, they told his wife that Skip was the only one they could do that for, no one else would be able to take the punches without hurt feelings.

Then the lesson asked me this question. “God can do beyond that which you can imagine as He uses your obedience as a foundation for what He is building. Consider this and record your thoughts.” Wow, after thinking about these 2 great people and their ability to show God's love at all times, how can I even ask for anything. Here is my response, a prayer.
“Lord, I know my dreams are not too big for You. But I also know that You have a plan for me, and my dreams may not match that plan. I don't want to ask for that dream because I don't believe my dreams are important. It's only Your plan that I live for. Amen.”
Now while this statement seems so selfless, it also became convicting. See, it's not just a measure to God that I feel my dreams are not important, I realized it's in general that I tend to believe my dreams or desires are not important. That I am not important. We all want to feel important, in some way. I want to feel important too, but I also feel that I don't deserve to feel important. That I am some how wrong in wanting to feel important. Crazy, but I think I am not alone. The biggest problem with thinking that way, it's like I am saying to God, “You were wrong! I am not worthy of anything. Stop saving me, because You made a mistake.” Now who is the one who is making the mistake? God doesn't make mistakes. Part of the week's study was talking about God changing His mind, not because He made a mistake. But because He has compassion and mercy for His children. It's because of His love for us that we know how to love. There is no greater love than the love that comes from our Father. He didn't create me to not deserve feelings of love or importance. I am correct in my thinking that I live to be used by God for His plan, but I also need to remember that it can include my own wants. He created me to have feelings and desires, He only asks that I be humble and obedient. 
It comes back to this, it's ok for me to want to feel important. I have to remind myself, I am important! While I may live for God's purpose, He wants to know my dreams. Who knows, He may use them for His purpose?