I’ve been discovered.
Due to the internet wonder that is Facebook, I have now reconnected with some friends from high school and college. I was lost but now I’m found, some twenty years later.
It’s strange, really. Cool, but strange. My parents moved out of state while I was in college, so I essentially fell off the face of the earth the night we graduated.
Now, when I see Facebook profile pictures and struggle to put names with faces and corresponding memories, it’s like I’m caught in this weird time warp between what was and what is. As I cruise Facebook and peer into faces from my past, sometimes the whole high school deal feels like yesterday; sometimes it feels like a lifetime ago.
Longtime readers of this site (anyone? anyone?) may remember the thoughts I posted as I pondered my twenty year high school reunion. Then I wondered if the old me, the me who graduated class of 1986, would be disappointed if she were to peek into the life of the 2006 me. Or, for that matter, the 2009 me. I think of her dreams–childish ones, to be sure–and of her naive ambitions and I still wonder if she would be surprised by how it all landed.
Certainly the 1986 me did not consider this to be her life’s vocation. She was to go! to be! to accomplish! Exactly what, she did not know, yet she did not let her confidence waver in light of such (in her mind) needless details.
Yet, here I am, some twenty years later. Older. Gray-er. Less ambitious. Slightly more cynical, knowing now that life is hard and confusing.
Don’t get me wrong; I love being a wife and a mom, a (somewhat negligent) homemaker, erstwhile blogger, and amateur writer. I love my life.
But, I’ll be honest with you. At various points in my journey, I’ve struggled with what I ought to be and do. I am still occasionally confounded by questions like, Who am I? What will I be when I grow up? In light of my recent Facebook mini-reunions, these questions seem to take on renewed fervor as I realize, for one thing, I’ve been a stay at home mom for nearly fifteen years. As I’ve written before,
Twenty years have passed, and my accomplishments include getting my college degree, marrying a wonderful man, birthing four children, changing mounds of diapers, and now fixing lunches, doing laundry, scrubbing toilets (only occasionally) and transporting children…As I reflected on the past twenty years, I admit I wondered if I was a waste of potential. I wondered if…maybe…perhaps…
I wonder, still. At some point in my twenty year journey, did I miss out on what I was really supposed to be? Some people know exactly what they want to do and be and go do and be exactly that. I, on the other hand, feel as if I’ve just let life happen to me. Did I make a wrong turn because I wasn’t paying attention? Because I was young and naive and didn’t know better?
I remember one intense time of crying out to the Lord a few years ago, wanting desperately to know my calling in no uncertain terms. I longed to be obedient to Him and I wanted a specific answer on what it was He wanted me to do. See, I thought it was all up to me. I had to figure it all out and then go and do it. The Holy Spirit, not in audible words but as an impression in my heart and mind, reminded me that He who called me was faithful and would complete His work in me. “Do you trust Me, Lisa?” He seemed to be asking.
That day I realized that if my heart’s desire is to follow Him in obedience, no matter the cost, then I can trust Him to lead me. Today. Tomorrow. Twenty years from now. Maybe to a vocation. Maybe to stay home. Maybe to write. Maybe to shuttle kids all over town and do laundry. Maybe to teach God’s Word to a group of ladies meeting in somebody’s living room. Maybe to fame and fortune, but more likely to anonymity.
Twenty years have taught me both the mysteries of the Lord’s plan as well as the blessings of walking with Him–even to places and vocations (or the lack thereof) that I would not have chosen for myself as a young eighteen year old who didn’t have a clue. I forget that the what is not so important as I sometimes think. It’s the how and the why that matter. How–in humble surrender. By His strength. Why–for His glory. As I live my life today, relying on His strength, seeking to bring glory to the Lord Jesus in all that I do, I can know I am doing exactly what I’m supposed to do.