When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. – Viktor E. Frankl
Wow, that quote hits me square in the forehead. It pretty much sums up the last two months of my life.
My life situation has changed beyond my control. I’m incapable of stopping the catapults being thrown at me, the doors closing, and the never-ending waiting of opportunities to open. And this adventure has just begun.
The major door to close was my job. It literally closed. The school I worked for as an art teacher, theater director/writer/teacher, business manager, and substitute office manager (yeah, I had a lot of hats there), officially closed its doors this summer. Permanently.
My last day on the job was mid-July, but it hasn’t stopped weighing on my mind and heart. I was there for 3 years, and had grown accustomed to the hustle and bustle of a small private school. The opportunities, memories, friends, and life-changing experiences will stick with me for the rest of my life.
It’s because of Rock Solid Academy that my love of writing is rekindled. They needed a play, and I excitedly wrote one, stage designed, and directed it. Twice. The first time with loads of help, the second time with virtually no help until I was blessed beyond measure from multiple friends during the performance week. Writing these plays inspired me to pick my unfinished novel back up, and finish it. And begin to write more. And more.
It’s because of Rock Solid Academy that my intense love of art was rekindled. My good friend Lauren, the principal at the time, gave me a chance as the new art teacher. She knew I was an artist, but I had minimal teaching experience. I’d only drawn and painted for fun, except of the cake art in my previous culinary business. Through lesson planning and working with talented young artists, my love for all things art grew to new depths. Today I have a greater understanding of the craft, history, and a more polished skill to take my own pieces to the next level. And I’m suddenly not afraid to tackle a new art project. More on that in a minute.
Rock Solid’s closing brought a change that I had wanted for months, but sooner than I expected it: the ability to be a full-time writer/artist. WOW. I get to live a dream! I suddenly have the time to write, paint, edit, create, research, read, draw, brainstorm, etc. etc. I even have the time to edit my website (yay!), and start a YouTube channel (double yay!). I should be happy during this exciting time. Unfortunately, I’m not making a single dime. YET.
There’s also another change happening that I can’t really get into yet. The reason being is that we just don’t know what will happen there, and I don’t want to get ahead of myself. We’re in the waiting period. This change could possibly be a big one, affecting the rest of our lives. (no, it doesn’t relate to more kids, stop asking! lol) But the wait has been no less than agonizing. The unknown is a difficult place to stall in. We’re forced to live by faith, not by sight.
I had no power to change the situation of being jobless. No power to keep a school going that was not only a home for me, but also to my son, Riker. There will be a big change for him in a new school this year too. But in this change, I’ve been challenged to change myself.
When you’re stuck at home, alone with your thoughts and an over-energetic 6 year old, you’re forced to reevaluate yourself. I battled with a depression I thought was behind me, my self-esteem plummeted, but my prayer life grew. I hit rock-bottom two weeks ago where I just couldn’t stop crying out in frustration. This week has finally been a turning point where I came to a revelation.
I was reminded of another similar time in my life over 10 years ago. The winter of 2009. I’d just lost my Grandfather, I’d gotten into my first car accident, I was evaluating my job life, felt stuck at home because I made so little money, and I was crying out to God asking why I was still single. In that time, God brought me to Psalms 37:4 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
I realized that I wasn’t in control of my life, and if I tried to be in charge then I was always doomed to failure. I needed to give the reigns over to Christ, and just let His joy flow through me. I needed to rest – to delight – myself in Him completely. To trust He had my best interest in mind. Always. It was that very spring. March 2009. That I met and fell in love with Andrew. My business skyrocketed. But more importantly, my joy in my Savior plateaued to a new level.
This is the turning point I’ve been going through again. New trials that are challenging me to grow deeper in joy and rest in the One who has me in the palm of His mighty hand.
This summer has already brought new life in me, and I personally can’t wait to see the breakthroughs that are just a breath away!
As I wait for an agent to excitedly snag my debut novel, The Judas Killer, God has been giving me ideas for children’s picture books! Who would have guessed?! The one closest to being done is called Mona’s Masterpiece. And for the first time in my life, I’m not afraid to draw people. Wow. If I can draw people, then look out world; NOTHING can stop me now!
What changes are you going through in your life? Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments. I’d love to know I’m not the only one going through a life change! 🙂